My blog today is to encourage you to revisit your playlists. I’ve included a screen-capture of my iTunes playlists for inspiration, motivation, relaxation, and creativity. These are created to deliberately harness the power of musical association to entrain (switch-on) the chosen state-of-mind. My hope is that this short article will encourage you to straight to your media player and produce or reproduce some empowering playlists.
Those who have known me for years know well my love of the vowels as memory cues. Today, I’d like to visit AEIOU in reverse order – as an explanation of why music-on-purpose is so important and powerful.
U = Unique. This is one of those wonderful activities that no one else can do for you. Choosing music-on-purpose has to be totally unique to you. Only you have the associations you have with particular pieces of music. Of course, we often have that wonderful moment where we seem to share a love of a specific band, album, or piece of music with a close friend. It becomes a moment of bonding, but I promise you – your reasons for being energised and inspired by that music will be, have to be, unique to you. This means that you have an unique opportunity to boost your own neuro-software in your own way. This is under your total control.
O = Open. I do think that considering attitudes and beliefs, states-of-mind and paradigms as “programmes” is a useful metaphor. For those of us who love music, nothing “opens” a new programme like clicking on a track in a playlist. Music is so rich in association that the feelings, people, and locations associated with that piece of music come flooding back with the song.
I = Imagination & Inspiration. Actually, I sometimes literally “inspire” (ie. breathe in) when I hear certain significant tracks – there’s a sharp intake of breathe as one does when one is excited! The right music for you creates an ideal state-of-mind for inspiring, motivating, relaxing, or energising you (and, of course, I mean different tracks for different states-of-mind). Vacuuming to Opera is an empowering experience! When coaching students of all ages, I strongly recommend that they listen to a specific band, album, or genre that differs from subject to subject. Neurons that fire together, wire together – so laying down some tracks in your memory while studying at the same time inextricably links the music to the message. To remember the subject, just push play!
E = Entrainment. This is my favourite concept in science (physics and biology). The fact that systems in harmony tend to synchronise is so exciting and empowering. Brains can sync to the beats-per-minute of music you positively associate with. Hearts can beat as one – if they are close enough to one another. Music is the fast-track to tapping into this physical reality and emotivating benefit.
A = Association. The golden word when it comes to creativity, memory recall, and the very Operating System of the brain and mind. Music is naturally rich in associative links to emotions, memories, and physiological changes. Using music-on-purpose just makes sense. Go, play!