One of the main reasons why people meditate is to enter a state of relaxation. There are many ways that meditation helps us achieve this level of calm; one of the more significant reasons is how well it works as a tool to address and aid stress. In reducing our stress levels through meditation, we not only experience increased happiness and focus. We also release anxiety and other unhelpful thoughts and emotions. These are just some of the psychological impacts. The problem with stress is that it becomes entangled with its physical symptoms like high blood pressure, trouble sleeping, headaches, digestive issues, muscle tension, aches, and pains. We will talk about some great relaxing meditation music.
So why do it?
Can you recall a time when you felt stressed or anxious, and the rate of your breathing and heartbeat began to pick up? Then, if took some deep breaths did you notice if both of these slowed down? Well, if you were to do this the other way around and start by taking quick, shallow breaths, you would likely notice a shift in your anxiety levels. This is precisely how stress functions. Yet, the amazing thing behind the interconnectedness of these symptoms is that if we address just one aspect of our health, we heal the other. We heal both. This is the beauty of meditation. This is a calming technique and transformative practice that helps us find more relaxation and joy in our daily lives through focusing on the breath. So, what if we were to add another element to meditation? One that shares similar benefits.
How to do it
Music also has the ability to alleviate the stress from our minds and uplift us. Its not only meditation music but all music. There is a reason why we put on a particular song because it makes us feel happy or less angry or forget about our problems for a moment. It is okay to have an outlet in life that doesn't require any conscious effort on our end. It's something we all need at times. Like meditation, music can slow down our breathing, promote happiness, and relieve stress and tension, and it is because to hear the music, we do not just use our ears but our minds. When we listen to music, it stimulates neurons in our brain that trigger dopamine release and are associated with motivation, reward, and emotion.
Combining music and meditation
When we combine meditation with music, we enhance the positive effects of both, promoting a deeper state of calm and relaxation. The other wonderful thing about music meditation is that it is a technique anyone can use and benefit from, even beginners. If you have ever consistently practiced meditation, then you know that it can take some time to notice the shifts in your mood - hence the word consistently.
However, when you incorporate meditation music in your practice, even beginners experience instant feelings of calm and relaxation. You might find you enjoy the simplicity of merely listening to relaxing meditation music as you breathe, as opposed to trying to stay focused on your breath through a guided practice or with no sound at all. The more you practice meditating alongside meditation music, the more resilience you can build to manage any stress, anxiety, or nervousness that arises in your life and keeps you from feeling relaxed.
What is meditation music?
Put simply, meditation music is music that is created to aid in the practice of meditation. The combination of rhythm and melody in a particular key doesn't just calm us down or enhance our meditation practice - it can transform us and shift our mindset, bringing us to a tranquil state and benefiting all aspects of our life.
The great thing about meditation music is that it has become so accessible, whether you listen to a CD and visualize birds or moving bodies of water or watch an entrancing nature scene on loop via a YouTube video. When it comes to relaxing meditation music, many people benefit from and connect with repetitive nature sounds, such as chirping birds or moving water. Sometimes these calming sounds will play on top of ambient music, which is a type of music that is more about tone than rhythm. Although, some listeners may find the lack of structured melody unsettling. In either case, for your music meditation, you want to look for gentle music without lyrics; one that has a slow tempo that feels comforting, possibly even familiar.
How to practice music meditation
1. Find meditation music that you enjoy listening to and helps you feel relaxed. Remember, your needs and preferences might differ from someone else's, so you don't have to force yourself to listen to birdsong if the dissonance or lack of a consistent beat makes you feel irritated.
2. The same as your choice in music, not all meditation practices have to look the same either. You might decide to sit in a comfortable cross-legged position on the floor or a cushion. Some prefer to sit on a chair or couch or even lie down in your bed or on a yoga mat. Some will avoid doing this because they may fall asleep. If you are not someone who tends to settle into sleep quickly and has somewhere to be, then it's completely fine if you do. You may want to set a timer or only play a specific portion of a mediation music track. This way you can focus on the meditation and not have to worry about time.
Once you've arrived in a comfortable position, allow your muscles to relax and your body to be heavy on whatever is supporting you. Close your eyes or keep a soft, fixed gaze if that makes you feel more comfortable. Notice if and where you are holding any tension; usually, this happens in the jaw and shoulders, so allow your shoulders and face to soften and relax your belly.
3. Once you've allowed your belly to relax so you can breathe through your diaphragm, begin to take slow, deep inhales through your nose, noticing the belly expanding. Then slowly exhale out of your mouth. You don't have to count your breaths or do any special breathing techniques - the music is there to help you redirect your focus if you notice your mind getting carried away by or stuck on a thought. Take in the sounds and physical sensations, such as the rise and fall of your belly.
4. Continue breathing and listening to the music, allowing yourself to be still. Once your time is up, take your time to find some small movements in your fingers, toes, wrists, and ankles before slowly opening your eyes and taking a moment to acknowledge your practice and the fact that you carved out this healing time for yourself.
When else can I listen to meditation music?
The thing about meditation music is that it's really just relaxing music. You might find certain meditation music that utilizes different frequencies or rhythms intended to help you manifest specific things in your life, such as love, joy, or abundance. Still, the common thread in all of these is relaxation.
That said, you can listen to meditation music anytime. The wordless, soothing sounds can do wonders for your focus. This makes it great music to listen to as you study or work.