DIY: Music Therapy

Right now I'm doing a little bit of my own music therapy. We're moving next month across the country and the past few weeks have been busy with packing, saying goodbye and finishing up work. I feel like I'm moving at light speed and now I'm slowing things down by listening to this song

This is a simple version of at home music therapy, and you can do it too.

Here's how...

Basic Music Therapy DIY 
(adapted from this article by Leah Oswanski, MA, LPC, MT-BC)

Step 1: Take a minute, check in with yourself. Close your eyes and take a deep breath, then slowly exhale. How do you feel? Are you tense? Stressed? Anxious? Annoyed? Excited? Happy? Now determine how you want to feel. 

Step 2: Select music to achieve your desired mood and make a playlist.  Make a separate playlist for each desired mood. You might want your playlists to reflect music that - is uplifting, makes you want to move/dance, makes you feel emotional/sad, and that makes you feel tired/relaxed. 

Keep this in mind: popular music, or music with lyrics can be distracting, you might get lost thinking about the lyrics and not actually feeling the music. If you're trying to calm down, look for music with fewer words and more instrumental parts. 

Step 3: Begin. Depending on your playlist, you may want to move around and dance, lie down on the couch/bed or floor, sit with your legs crossed and eyes closed or even do an activity like drawing. 

Step 4: Check in with yourself again. After a song or two, check in again. Does the music feel like it's helping you achieve your desired mood? If not, what changes do you need to make? Change the playlist? Change the way your listening to it? Make any adjustments and keep listening. 

More on music therapy and how it works:

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