Relaxation music. When many of us know what it is, but we really do not know all the fine facets of the benefits of it. Relaxation music is music that is used or played in order to help a person relax or “chill out”. Commonly associated with providing benefits such as increased productivity or ease of sleep, relaxation music certainly is popular. One simply needs to go to Youtube for evidence: typing in “relaxation music” provides results that range in views from eight hundred thousand to more than seven million views. But does it really help? In reality, while I can say that, personally, relaxation music does provide me with ease of sleep and increased work productivity, music in and of itself is a very personal thing, and effects everyone differently – therefore, statements such as “Relaxation music improves work productivity” are flawed. These statements simply are never backed with enough evidence to prove that EVERYONE who listens to relaxation music benefits from it. These theses could be corrected with a simple addition, for example, “Relaxation music tends to increase work productivity”.
As internet sound sleep “executive” Flashaltman explains, “Music is a very personal thing, and the effects it has on one person isn’t necessarily the same as what it would have on another. ” Exactly. Some people could get distracted, some people could get angry, some people could even potentially be depressed by relaxation music. Sure, this is all technically speculation, but the point is that the possibilities still exist.
Another commonly touted aspect of relaxation music is that it can reduce stress. (Gee, stress sure does seem to be a common theme of this blog…). Many of us feel stress, physically speaking, when our heart rate goes up and our blood pressure spikes. Psychologist Jane Collingwood asserts that certain types of relaxation music can have a beneficial effect on our physiological functions, slowing the pulse and heart rate, lowering blood pressure, and decreasing the levels of stress hormones. This part of the “relaxation music” debate seems to be the best supported – here is where the details are the most specific and concrete. Whether or not stress has any relation to work productivity or ease of sleep is an entirely different argument altogether (but it nonetheless is one I might discuss in a later blog post).
Enough argumentative talk. Let’s look at an example, and see if it helps us, why don’t we? This is the aforementioned Youtube video that has over seven million views.
This relaxation music comes from Youtube user tigernov6. The likes and comments on the video are overwhelmingly positive. The calm, soothing, nature of the sound is complete with softly chirping birds and flutes. Hope you enjoy!