Boost your focus / creativity by listening to music

Idea

Many of us like to listen to background music when we are working on anything which involves creative processes like painting or writing. There are certain music styles or ways to listen to music which help us to focus. I’ll describe a couple of these.

How?

Listenonrepeat

One of my favorite tools for focusing is a website called listenonrepeat which lets you repeat the same music track unlimited times. This service is using youtube as a source, however, feel free to use any music player which supports looping of the same track.

Listening to the same track, again and again, will let the brain pay attention to its details although focusing on the music will take very little effort, so it’s a nice way to play something and not put a huge load on the brain. If you always listen to different tracks your brain will use more energy and attention to understand the music. Listening to just one track or changing once an hour will enhance your attention and focus.

Listenonrepeat website

A list if my recent favorite tracks to listen on repeat
Interstellar Main Theme – Extra Extended – Soundtrack by Hans Zimmer

American Beauty Soundtrack (American Beauty)

K-Pax Grand Central Track

Ellie Goulding – Love Me Like You Do Cover (Cello/Piano) – Brooklyn Duo

Ludwig van Beethoven Symphony No. 6, (Full version)

Creative work

Do you write or work on something specific? For creative writing or similar tasks, many people recommend to actually go and work in a café. The background noise typically found in cafés boosts creativity. If you don’t have a nearby café or wouldn’t like to spend the whole day there, there are multiple websites offering at least the background noise from the cafés.
My favorite tool
Cafe Restaurant Noise Generator

A similar tool which plays ad-free focus music
Relax daily Focus Music

Reference

Is Noise Always Bad? Exploring the Effects of Ambient Noise on Creative Cognition

Do you feel stressed?

Listen to this track: Marconi Union – Weightless (part 1)
Part 1 is the original commissioned track which has been called as ‘the world’s most relaxing song’. Created by Marconi Union it has been claimed by others to have therapeutic properties encouraging relaxing of the body and the mind. This track was developed together with UK’s leading sound therapist: Lyz Cooper.

To test the effectiveness of this song, a study was conducted on forty women who were connected to sensors and given challenging puzzles to solve in a limited time to induce a level of stress.

The study showed that listening to the song resulted in a 65% reduction in overall anxiety. The song was found to be more relaxing than a massage, walk or even a cup of tea.

If you don’t see the soundcloud player below, you might need to switch off your ad-blocker.

Reference

The most relaxing song ever
I really liked this song, so after I figured out there are multiple similar songs, I immediately purchased the album from Marconi Union. This is an album which is on my phone all the time.

Rainymood

I love the sounds of rain and thunder. If I’m lucky to write during the time it’s actually raining outside it’s a pleasant and inspiring feeling, thanks to rainymood I could always listen to the sounds of rain. This website helps you to focus, relax or sleep. The website doesn’t have any settings (which I absolutely don’t mind), the mobile applications have some simple configuration options.
Rainymood website

Nothing? Nothing!

Well, there is always a choice to listen to nothing. Actually very few people have the chance to listen to “nothing” so if you would like to try it you would need to find a silent room nearby. In Earth’s quietest place actually, most people stay way less than forty-five minutes. I’m wondering how would it be to meditate or just be in that room. So if you decide not to listen to anything, depending on your apartment you will still hear noises from nature, cars, your family, neighbors, devices etc.
I encourage you to try out writing in nature or just listening to the birds, dogs, trees around you.

Reference

Earth’s quietest place will drive you crazy in 45 minutes

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