Music & Wellness
A famous person said: If you lack wellness that means there is not enough music in your life.
I read this somewhere and have been humming it to myself ever since. Whenever I feel the need to be well, I try to bring more music into my life. I often forget to do this, doubting that something so simple might actually work.
One early Monday morning when my mood was low, friends were away and everything seemed to go against me, I took a chance and tried on “my kind of music”.
It really, really WORKED!
I was so surprised that after 3:42 minutes with a song I was up and ready to face the world, come what may. My after-the-song-self laughed at the before-the-song-self. The big worries seemed to have lost their charm to stress me. The unwillingness to face the world had taken a 180-degree turn. I started to actually tap my foot to the beat of the music.
No, it did not mean that all worries were gone, problems were solved automatically, or a cup of tea was teleported in front of me. It just meant that I started to feel well again. Well enough to face the world with a positive attitude.
Since then, listening to music the first thing in the morning became a part of my routine.
I started to realize why it’s a religious practice to sing or listen to others sing early in the morning and why prayers are sung with music in schools all over the world. These are contributors to our wellness that make us ready to face the day, or as ready as we can be.
As a wellness contributor, I resolved to bring music into my sessions.
And of course, it worked.
I have used instrumental music in my counseling sessions with students to increase their level of attention. Children became more receptive to positive stimuli and were able to focus better while music was played. Before I started a Group counseling session, children walked into the hall swaying to the beats of the song ‘R-E-S-P-E-C-T’. As soon as the session ended, we all came together to do some ‘hand-dancing’ from our seats. The smiles on the students’ faces was something so precious that I’ll always treasure it as a ‘wellness moment’.
Music has also particularly helped me get through the pandemic last year. It was a lifesaver, literally, for many people all over the world.
My dream is to join all students and teachers virtually while the School Band plays and sings for all of us. I can feel and imagine the amount of togetherness and wellness it would bring to the moment. I am smiling to myself just writing about it.
Did you know?
Harvard Medical School study (2006) found that music was able to reduce chronic pain and depressive mood. The cerebellum part of brain processes rhythm and frontal lobes interpret the emotional content of music. Music, that is so powerful to be “spine-tingling” can light up the brain’s reward centre much like pleasurable stimuli as chocolate. Listening to music releases neurotransmitters like endorphins in the brain. Endorphin eases pain and anxiety. We experience fewer negative effects of stress.
Ms. Gunja Barman
I am Gunja Barman. Your friendly-neighborhood Counselor in CHIREC. I love interacting with students and counseling them. I started my career as a Counselor, working in a Hospital. But I enjoy working with students even more. The positive vibes and the cheerful faces keep the feel-good factor high in my work. Besides music, I also use toys, puzzles, games, coloring and drawing sheets as tools for counseling young children.