Music and Stress Management

"How can music be used most effectively for stress management" is one the most frequently asked question I get these days. There are just a few basic principles that one needs to understand in order to tailor their favorite music for stress management purposes.

  1. It is most important to use YOUR favorite categories of music. If you don't like Mozart or classical music, don't use it! (However, I do hope you'll at least try it!) Good, quality music can be found in most any genre of music.

  2. Choose music that has pleasant associations for you, music that brings you cheerful memories.

  3. If you are trying new music, instrumental music tends to be more stress-relieving than music with lyrics. This is because it does not demand you to "Think."

  4. Choose music that is slow, but that has a regular pulse or beat. Researchers have discovered that music with the tempo of the healthy, resting heartbeat will guide (synchronize or match) your own breathing and heart-beat to it, thus slowing down our racing body rhythms.

  5. Racing thoughts can lead to anxious and stressed-out feelings. For this reason, use the rhythms of slow music, to slow your body and thoughts down.

What are some of my favorite music for stress management? I listen to a lot of classical music. I like the slow movements of the Baroque composers for relaxation. I also like much of the Celtic music that is out, Enya, the Native American flute music, crystal bowls, and the solo piano music of Chopin, Brahms, Rachmaninoff and Debussy.

My list could go on forever. I like slow reggae music, steel drums, the voices of Anonymous 4. If you're not familiar with these names, check them out on the internet, or at your local music store. If I have left you with a burning, unanswered question, please tell me you need more clarification!

About Author Dr. Alice Cash: Helping people to use music for Healing and Wellness. Dr. Cash stresses the use of music for health, learning, motivation, relaxation, energy building, or well-being. She is known internationally for her work with music and pregnancy, surgery, addictions, and Alzheimer's disease. Dr. Cash can be reached through Healing Music Enterprises. (

You may reproduce Dr. Cash's articles as long as your use the complete version without editing including the last paragraph.
Stress Management using Music; Dr. Alice Cash

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