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How Music affects Mental Health

Some general information on music and mental health - Music sways our emotions, acting as a universal language, bridging the gap between thoughts and feelings.  Whether it be to evoke sadness, happiness, anger, or even fear, music transcends mere noise to fill silence.

Andie’s POV - As someone who is an avid music listener, music affects my mood in many ways.  Whether it's to process my emotions or help me feel something, music affects all aspects.  My music taste is very diverse.  I enjoy songs from genres like rock, indie, and alternative to genres like K-pop, R&B, and pop.  Due to this diverse taste, I feel as though I can find a song for every situation or emotion.  Additionally, lyrics play a huge role in the emotional aspect as well.  For example, my favorite song at the moment is “A Match Into Water” by Pierce the Veil and although the instrumentals are very upbeat, the lyrics tell a sad story of losing a loved one.  This song often puts me in a good mood because it is one of my favorites, but I also feel a twinge of sadness when I pay attention to the lyrics.  In terms of songs that evoke a response, I often listen to a playlist of upbeat and hype songs before a volleyball game or practice.  I listen to songs like “Heartbeat” by Childish Gambino and “New Perspective” by Panic! At The Disco to get into a headspace where I can perform my best.  For songs that make me feel happy, I typically listen to indie pop songs like “Kiss Me” by Sixpence None The Richer and “Unwritten” by Natasha Bedingfield, which I find myself listening to frequently.  Songs that I have listened to when processing sad feelings include “My Love Mine All Mine” by Mitski and “I Wanna Be Yours” by Arctic Monkeys.  Through melodic sequences and heartfelt lyrics, music affects my mood and oftentimes can even be used as a form of therapy to help process emotions. 

Leyna’s pov - Music. Whether it’s rock, rap, pop, folk, or R&B, can significantly affect how I feel. For example, “Like You Do” by Joji elicits a more negative emotional response than when I choose to listen to “American Boy” by Estelle and Kanye West. After making a playlist of some of my favorite songs and listening to them, I found that listening to faster, more upbeat music puts me in a better mood than listening to slower, more melancholic music. Although that may seem obvious, I also found that ambient music like the videogame soundtracks calm me down, in turn putting me in a better mood. I guess some days I feel like a Skyrim NPC, other days I’m my mother in a 2000’s night club. In my experience, music has an adverse effect on people's emotions based on their individual experiences in life. Someone's “sad” song could be another's “happy song”. It all depends on what they have been been through which can be very different from someone else. 

Story Written by Andrea Bermudo and Leyna Sepulveda


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