Saturday, October 11, 2008

How to Relax with Music

I just want to listen to relaxing music….but I can’t find any!

So many of my clients, when they lie down on my sound table, say they want to hear ‘relaxing’ music.
That is like saying, “ feed me something yummy”!

Given our high stress and busy lives, most people are running in high gear. Imagine a car tearing around in 5th gear. What do you think would happen if you down-shifted to 1st or even 2nd gear. Not a pretty sound.
This is just like taking a person who has been going at top speed all day (or even for weeks) and having them try to listen to some dreamy slow wave music. They won’t be able to engage.

So here’s the trick, which was formalized in the 1930’s by psychologists: match the mood, then gradually move to the desired mood. Massage therapists often voice their frustration when Super Person lies down on their table.
“They don’t like any of the ‘relaxing’ music I play, and it takes them the full hour to just start to unwind.”

The starting point is to rate your level of alertness on a scale of 1-10 with 10 being the most active.
If you are a ten, pick some music that is close to your level and that you enjoy listening to.
The next piece would be slightly slower in tempo, etc. It is all in the tempo or speed of the music. Always have it be slightly slower than where you rate yourself to be, otherwise you will find yourself maintaining your level of alertness, or even increasing it.

Be sure to pick music you like, or think you would like. Do you gravitate to jazz, blues, R&B, etc.? But don’t let that get in your way of trying something new.

If you are rating yourself ready for the big plunge into slow wave alpha or theta brain wave levels, here are some interesting albums for you that I use in our clinic. Not only are they designed to pull you down into the realms of peace and serenity, they are well composed by people who are seriously intent on assisting you to inner peace. These albums are not only beautiful but therapeutic.

Liquid Mind Series by Chuck Wild
Balance by David Ison
Ocean Euphoric by Kip Mazuly
So Beautiful by Barry Oser
Cats Purr
Sleeping through the Rain - a Hemi-Sync CD*
Deep Journey – a Hemi-Sync CD*
Mystic Realms – a Hemi-Sync CD*
Odyssey by Shapeshifter

*available at Musical Medicine


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