Music is my lifeblood. I listen to it to feel creatively refreshed, to knock down thoughts that hold me back, to find alternative ways to deal with personal and professional problems, and sometimes just to escape the harsh realities of life. However, my connection with music is not just about shuffling my Spotify playlist. Music is everywhere and so is my connection with it.
As much as I love the work of great musicians and composers, I equally enjoy the music in the little things. For example, the chirping of birds is a melodious experience, while fights among sparrows are cacophonous; the sound of an aeroplane overhead can trigger our desire to travel; the slow zzzrrr sound of a closing door can sound like a lost opportunity or a problem bidding goodbye; the sound of a heartbeat can trigger emotions of fear or romance.
There is something about music that’s beyond words, poetry, melody and notations. It makes us believe in and imagine a world that doesn’t exist in reality, but still creates experiences that complete us!
Here’s how music helps me establish deeper, meaningful connections with myself and the world:
- It helps me understand myself better: At a very basic level, music helps me understand who I am as a person and thus shapes my identity. This identity keeps changing and that’s one reason why my preferences of music change too. Sometimes I like folk music and sometimes country, sometimes it is hip-hop and at other times it is just soothing meditation music. Whenever my life is going through a tough phase, I just pause, observe and listen to the music surrounding us and it provides the necessary reconciliation.
- It helps me strengthen relationships: When I deliver inspirational talks, music helps me establish an instant connection with the audience irrespective of their age group, ethnicity, educational qualifications, work-experience, functional expertise and so on. That’s because I believe music is an emotional interface—it creates a field for people to interact, at times without even speaking a word.
- It helps shape my perspective: For most of us, our lives have become a continuous stream of 24×7 episodes where there are no shifts as we juggle between priorities and opportunities. Music shapes our perspective by providing regular exits whenever I am changing tracks; slowing down or gearing up to achieve the needed momentum.
- It recharges emotional currency: Whenever I feel drained, a soulful piece of instrumental music, with complete focus in the current moment can be a great energiser. It helps me charge my emotional batteries and provide peace and flexibility needed to handle life situations better.
- It sparks creativity and imagination: Music triggers creativity and sparks the imagination. According to a PLOS ONE study by Simone M Ritter, listening to music facilitates flexible thinking, which leads to innovative and unconventional ideas.