Are you one of the many students at campuses nationwide walking around with earbuds in or headphones on, knowing that music affects your mood and can help you cope with the multiple layers of university stress? Have you taken the extra step to craft a playlist as study-aid?
Music can help you feel relaxed, and it may also help improve your focus. Additionally, listening to instrumental music may help stimulate the brain for improved concentration and reduced boredom .
Perhaps you have to read for hours because there’s an assignment deadline approaching. This buildup of stress can lead to anxiety making the process of reading counterproductive. Reading is an exercise that requires full attention and it is best to minimize distraction. One might think that music could be a distraction and with some types of music that might be the case but putting the right instrumental mood music on in the background can help you destress by raising the level of endorphins in your blood and make it easier to comprehend and retain the information. Calming sounds can serve as white noise and drown out other distracting noises such as restless roommates, neighbors or one’s own wandering mind.
in the study zone
Studying can become monotonous and some brain candy can help break you out of the spell and stimulate both sides of the brain simultaneously.
Most stimulating input is often taken in by either our right, creative brain hemisphere, or by the left left side which is more analytical. The corpus callosum is what connects the two hemispheres and when listening to music a distinctive activation occurs that stimulates both sides of the brain at once. This enhanced brain function allows for greater storage of information and releases beneficial endorphins like serotonin that promote well-being and relaxation.
Increased relaxation and lower levels of stress can lift spirits, help you feel optimistic when staring at the large text book on your desk or for those times when you aren’t feeling so confident that you’ll be able to fill pages with meaningful words for the research paper. Having the right music on may be the extra motivational energy burst you need to stay in the study zone because the brain often associates music with positive experiences and when you’re in a good frame of mind it is typically easier to focus on a task.
Big exam coming up? Some people claim that music can be too distracting. Some music that has a lot of lyrics or is obnoxious or even too sleep inducing could pull focus but you know what else is distracting… Stress and the daunting task of sifting through lengthy volumes of intellectually challenging material!
The right selection of music can help reduce stress, keep your mind from wandering and even make you feel more confident. Several studies discovered that music has a powerful triple-action on your heart rate, brain activity and release of biochemical stress-reducing effects (Cervellin & Lippi, 2011). suggesting that music enhances cognitive function, stimulating the brain to be more alert and increase knowledge retention.
Consider a custom playlist as a musical companion during your studies. Especially instrumental songs with no lyrics (For & Embrey, 1972) Some people believe only classical music can work to your advantage while studying which is mostly due to Dr Gordon Shaw’s “Mozart Effect”. Poised on the findings that the IQ of a student group had improved just by listening to Mozart’s “Sonata for Two Pianos in D Major” constantly. But studies also show that electronic music for students improves concentration.
Playing music while you study can make it more interesting , especially for those subjects that you find less than enjoyable which will give you more endurance to keep you focused on completing your assignments.
For Spotify users, here is the Study Hall playlist I created, a collection of engaging indie electronica instrumentals, with beats to keep you alert and repetitive melodies to relieve stress and aid concentration.
STUDY HALL playlist on Spotify