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Beating Stress and Depression Through Music

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Stress and depression can make a woman, especially a woman suffering from substance abuse, feel overwhelmed and anxious.  Many women find it difficult to cope with the stress and depression that can be brought on by daily life.  Between juggling the needs of others and their needs, it can be hard for a woman to take time out of her busy life to deal with her own emotions.

While some women find that activities like yoga, reading, painting or exercise help them cope with stress and depression, other women don’t feel like they even have the time to carve out for those activities.  Music can be an incredibly powerful tool for women who find it difficult to find 15, 30 minutes, or an hour for themselves each day.  Although we’re still learning about how music impacts the body, we know that music therapy can be effective for treating stress and depression, as well as anxiety or feelings of being overwhelmed.

Combating Daily Stress and Depression With Music

We’ve all listened to a song on the radio that has brightened our mood, made us feel more at peace or brought a smile to an otherwise terrible day.  Some songs bring to mind memories of happier times, like our school days or a particular family vacation, while others put us in a more thoughtful mood. When you listen to music to relax, here are some things to keep in mind:

Don’t use headphones!  Play the music through speakers, even if you aren’t in the car, and let your whole body feel the rhythm.  Dance if you want to dance, sing if you want to sing.  Let your body tell you how the music can ease your anxiety, stress and depression.

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Close your eyes.  If you can, listen to the music at home or in a place where it is safe to close your eyes. This helps calm our brains and get our bodies to focus on the beat or the lyrics.  If you are listening to soft music or jazz, take deep breaths while you are listening and focus your mind on the notes.  If you are listening to something upbeat, have a 30 second dance marathon and get physically active.

Make a mixtape.  Okay, so we don’t make cassette tapes anymore, but take that concept and put together a playlist of songs that will help you cope with your feelings of anxiety, stress and depression.  If a certain song reminds you of a past relationship that is the root of your depression, avoid adding it to your play list, or if you must, add it to the beginning of your play list and make the subsequent tracks more relaxing and uplifting.  If you need to cry, cry it out and let the next song heal your heart.

Music therapy can be a great tool for coping with stress and depression, but it is just one of many treatments that can help.  If you or a woman you love is not feeling herself and may be suffering from anxiety, stress and depression, please call us today. We have a women’s program designed to treat the unique needs of women who suffer from substance abuse and mental health disorders. Destination Hope is a full-service alcohol abuse, drug addiction and health treatment facility in Florida for men and women who suffer from substance abuse and co-occurring disorders.

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