Singing has been shown to alleviate depression and stress.
The song “Take Me To Church” by Hozier creeped up on me. At first I didn’t like it, mainly because it sounded like gospel or something. After a while I decided to trust my radio station 89X. Alternative music. There’s a reason for the song to be streaming on it, so I listened to it more than once. Really listened to the lyrics and the tiny cracks in my heart that had begun to spread deepened and widened. Plus I changed my medication, haha me.
When I listened to this song I would start crying. It reminded me of people that I know, knew or people in certain situations in general. It became a barometer for my mood and a cathartic exercise.
On my way home from work is when I usually have these emotional potholes. Once, I thought, “okay, what if I sing the song instead of just listening to it? Maybe I would stop crying.”
Wow, that was naive! The emotional flow broke out of the bottleneck and hit me full force. I had to pull into a parking lot.
Since then I’ve been singing a lot more, it de-stresses me. And that particular song hasn’t made me as emotional. Now I can just appreciate it.
What I notice about singing is there’s no thought requirement. Even humming or whistling is good for the soul, if you feel uncomfortable with letting your voice belt out some lyrics. Not to self: with the onset of warm weather and open windows I will have to turn my volume down *sadface*.
So if there is no thought during singing unless it’s remembering the words to a song, can one interrupt panicked thought processes or down spiral feeling? It’s worked so far for me. Even if I end up crying, I at least have let out the emotion and by the time I get home from work I’m doing far better than when I left work. It also helps I have about 45 minutes to spend on my own harmonic highway.