Listen to stuff you love!
As obvious as it sounds, it’s important that if you’re going to listen to music, you might as well listen to songs you enjoy. Songs that make you happy or excited will improve your mood, which in turn can improve your productivity. It really is as simple as that!
Instruments > vocals
I have to admit, I love jamming to some tunes whilst I work but that’s exactly what I do sometimes, jam. A lot of what I do focuses on writing a large amount of content and if I listen to songs that are top chart songs – or just full of lyrics – I’m bound to sing along! Lyrics tend to activate the language area in our brains which can interfere with our other language based activities i,e, reading and writing.
It’s not unusual for me to write the lyrics to song down on a page because I wasn’t paying attention. So, when I need really to focus, I’ll choose to listen to film scores, or soft jazz with no lyrics. It’s amazing how much it relaxes me and gets me focused.
Sound is music
So maybe you just can’t deal with all the noise and commotion music creates, or simply aren’t a fan of music in general. *gasps* – But, do not fret! Instead, it might be worth listening to sounds that can help you regain concentration.
Maybe you need to be transported to the Amazon and get a ‘forest’ background sound rolling, or some fireplace crackles to get you comfortable. Even white noise can help certain people’s concentration, so why not give it a try?
Change it up
As you can tell, I really do love music. But, sometimes I need to switch things up a bit to get my day going. I can start by listening to a jazz playlist just to get into my headspace of writing, but before lunch however, I need something a bit faster in tempo to get me working and not distracted by the thought of food!
In the late afternoon, I’ve got my coffee and my dance playlist turned up! Fast-paced music tends to help me feel more energised and heightens my awareness. You know when you feel tempted to play that Siesta playlist on Spotify after lunch? DON’T. I’d opt for an exciting Salsa playlist instead!
Take a break
As much as music might help boost our creativity or help focus our attention on work, it’s always best to sometimes take break from sounds and music and just step away from all the noise for a second.
If you can, get some fresh air by walking outside during your break, or maybe just stretch a bit as you get some water. Make sure that you’re respecting your body’s need for some space and relaxation.
Whether it’s Rock, Bossa Nova, or Hans Zimmer’s Inception soundtrack, be creative with your music choice and let it bring out the the best type of creativity in you!