Music and Mental Illness

Music is a very powerful medium when it comes to altering mood. A certain song, at a certain time can completely alter the way you feel. For example, if you’re a glutton for punishment like myself, you’ll listen to depressing music when you’re feeling depressed. My personal favorite is “Bullet” by Hollywood Undead, however I feel that no one with mental illness should listen to this song.

Still, if you wanted to feel better, music has that power as well. It can lift your mood and make you feel more happy. It can get you pumped to go to the gym and put in some extra work. It can make you feel more at ease and help manage anxiety.

There are just those times when you can’t seem to get out of a funk, and listening to music might help or hurt you. There is such power and beauty in music that it always puts me in such awe of how creative people can be. My favorite feel good song is “Somewhere Over the Rainbow” by Israel Kamakawiwo’ole. His beautiful and mesmerizing voice accompanied by the haunting elegance of a ukulele can just perk me up no matter how down I’m feeling.

As I’ve mentioned is several posts before, music is a powerful tool that if used correctly can become your core coping mechanism. However it also, as I’ve stated that it can be dangerous if used incorrectly. When you’re feeling down, mood boosting music is recommended, as the more negative music can make you more comfortable, but will ultimately make you feel worse.

All in all, music is probably one of the most versatile human creations. However, for the mental health community, music often becomes a very important piece of our self-care regimen. If you take anything away from this article, just don’t use music to make yourself feel worse. You have it hard enough dealing with your illness, so use music for the power of good.

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