Guest Blogger Erin Taylor
Remember to bring your headphones the next time you go to work.
- Music pumps you up – The problem: Admit it. The routine we do, the environment we bask in, and the people we see every single day become dullsville sooner or later. And when we get bored, we tend to look for something else that would interest us. The result: Unticked tasks on our checklists.The solution: Pick a song from your list that’s sure to wake your dopamine-releasing organ. Let every note in the music get you in the groove. Repeat until you’re done with your tasks.
- Music lets you focus – The problem: When our colleague in the next cubicle is talking to someone over the phone, we can’t help ourselves but try to decode what they are talking about. Eavesdropping is human nature. The result: We become more interested in how the conversation will end. The solution: Choose a song without lyrics. The words your colleague is saying are already distracting. If you listen to music with lyrics, the words may just mix with what your neighbor is uttering, or your brain will just shift its focus on the words in the song.
- Music de-stresses you – The problem: A series of meetings, especially ones that involve heavy brainstorming or perhaps arguing, is mentally and emotionally draining.The result: You imagine the spa you’ve seen on your way to work but don’t have the time to go to. The solution: Listen to music with elements of nature. Tranquil music with nature sounds such as running water is known to calm us. It’s probably because nature sound signifies a quiet life far from danger.
- Music makes you more creative – The problem: Your task at hand requires your creative juices to free flow, but a series of sleepless nights almost dried up your brain. The result: Your brain tries to find a creative way to sleep without anyone noticing it. The solution: Pick a mellow sound. Research suggests that moderate ambient noise results in high construal level and abstract processing. Both of which are necessary for creative thinking.
- Music relaxes you – The problem: You’re a few hours away to your presentation in front of the big bosses. You’re not done with your slides, and your computer is not cooperating. That’s nerve wracking. The result: You’re sweating profusely. You fidget. You want to fly away never to be seen in the office again. The solution: Listen to any of the songs that help you relax. These songs are known to lessen mental activity, lower blood pressure, and ease anxiety. After some time of listening to them, your entire being is ready to continue the slides you planned to abandon earlier.
Music and productivity in the workplace may not always work for everyone or for every task.
A study concluded that music is not that helpful for introverts while working. In fact, it is detrimental. Also, if working on a task for the first time, give your 100% attention to it. No distraction. Not even music. For a repetitive task, however, you may go and dance to Beyoncé for as long as you wish. Or until your boss has asked you not to.