Music For Emotional Health

Started by SueC, July 28, 2019, 16:21:03

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SueC

OK, I think this song actually does qualify as an emotional health song for romantic relationships.  Really, truly, because I think cultivating a certain kind of insanity is good for us.  :angel


It's also one of the slim minority of love songs I can actually relate to.  :lol:

In other news, look what popped up in The Guardian this morning. Apparently we are now old enough to pass on our accumulated wisdom to other people!  :1f631:  Two weeks ago we were interviewed by lovely Alex, and this is the result: https://www.theguardian.com/lifeandstyle/2020/aug/16/how-we-stay-together-thinking-what-you-might-lose-sometimes-gets-you-through

She really took the time to understand where we were coming from, was great fun to talk to (we spent almost as much time laughing as conversing), and wrote her piece superbly without distorting anything. We think it's important to be open about mental/emotional health and relationship backstages, in an era where so much stuff is stage managed to look picture perfect, so we put our hands up to be part of this series which attempts to look honestly at how people overcome the inevitable challenges of making long-term relationships work. I think it's really important for big-picture mental/emotional health not to conceal the things that are difficult for us, and not to invent a fairytale that doesn't represent your lived reality. The more we can talk about the hard things as a community, the better.

If you've got a story that might add something useful to the community conversation, contact Alex - she's great.
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SueC

There's some music that you shouldn't listen to if you're depressed or otherwise down, which is actually a really great idea to listen to when you're feeling good.  I don't think memento mori are generally advisable for when you're in a dark place (although sometimes they can be cathartic there), but I think they're so valuable in general.

Here's some words by WB Yeats, set to music.  We are all faeries... and I love how this track is beautiful and bitter-sweet...


Here's a nice video someone made for it - audio not as good, but also makes a point well.


Like it says in the Fight Club song, "You have to realize that someday you will die. Until you know that, you are useless."

This memento mori by Yeats says, in essence, "Life is short, live it well, enjoy it, do wonderful things."

Soon shall our wings be stilled
And our laughter over and done
So let us dance on the waves
Let us dance in the sun
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SueC

OK, who else has been using music as one of their strategies for promoting mental and emotional wellbeing during the pandemic and the woeful political spectacles in many of our countries?  Playing favourites and half-forgotten things from your collection, perhaps practising an instrument in your lounge room for brain gym, and perchance singing in the shower?

I'd like to thank all musicians out there who make thoughtful and complex music, all the people involved in making musical instruments and CDs and records and sheet music and online tutorials etc etc etc, and all the people who buy recorded music and concerts, and go to gigs, which supports musicians to make music. Thank you thank you thank you. Thank you for helping us to be human.  ♥
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Ulrich

Quote from: SueC on November 06, 2020, 06:11:31OK, who else has been using music as one of their strategies for promoting mental and emotional wellbeing

Hm, I guess I have always done so. Sometimes more, sometimes less.

(It depends, there are days when I'm just not too keen on music. On others, I look through my collection and just can't seem to find something fitting my mood. But thankfully, on most days I do find something to listen to. Often it leads to me thinking "why didn't I find this last week?" or "why did I not listen to this for ages?"...)

Quote from: SueC on November 06, 2020, 06:11:31Playing favourites and half-forgotten things from your collection

Yes, I've always done this, but I had a bit more time during "lockdowns" and such (less work, less meeting people, no concerts, no cinema...)!

In fact I've been listening to some old vinyl records, I otherwise wouldn't have found time & patience for.  :cool
It's never enough...

SueC

Quote from: Ulrich on November 06, 2020, 12:24:53(It depends, there are days when I'm just not too keen on music. On others, I look through my collection and just can't seem to find something fitting my mood.

This is when you have to get in the shower, and improvise some singing.   :smth023

Or maybe buy a big kettledrum and beat it up?   :-D

Know what you mean re music-free days.  We're like that too - sometimes we have podcast phases, sometimes we just want quiet, and sometimes it's another music binge...


QuoteBut thankfully, on most days I do find something to listen to. Often it leads to me thinking "why didn't I find this last week?" or "why did I not listen to this for ages?"...)

The other day I realised I'd not listened to an album I like in five years!!!  :1f631:

It's like, sometimes we actually forget we made ice-cream.  And then it's, "Oh, we have ice-cream!" when we look in the freezer for another reason...  :1f635:



QuoteYes, I've always done this (playing favourites and half-forgotten things from your collection), but I had a bit more time during "lockdowns" and such (less work, less meeting people, no concerts, no cinema...)!

In fact I've been listening to some old vinyl records, I otherwise wouldn't have found time & patience for.  :cool

This does sound like a nice spin-off from having to stay home a lot!

I wonder if some people have a rigorous system to make sure they don't forget to listen to anything in their music collection for too long.  Maybe they write an algorithm.  I'm not talking about iPods here, of course - you can programme those and make playlists etc, and listen by artist or song or album, alphabetically - I'm talking about the physical stuff on the shelf - not all of which is on the iPod, and anyway, the iPod reduces the quality of the sound both by data compression and because of the types of headphones that go with it - speakers in a room with good acoustics is always so much better, and I think it's nice to feel the low range in your thorax anyway rather than just blast your ears specifically...

For that, Brett and I mostly just seem to operate on whim - sometimes just happening to feel like XYZ, sometimes browsing shelves, and sometimes we say to each other, "YOU put something on - surprise me!" - or, even more fun, "Play me something you like that I don't know, and tell my why you like it, where you first heard it, etc etc etc."  :)

It's also really nice to ask your friends to bring some music to your house, and play you something they like.  You can get to know each other a lot better with this, even if you've known each other ten years already!   :cool

A bit of a tangent, but today we happened to catch a talk by a 17-year-old with progeria, and he too has music as something that's important for his happiness... and gives some cogent advice on happiness, as well!  Very cool kid.  :smth023

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Ulrich

Quote from: SueC on November 07, 2020, 10:53:23This is when you have to get in the shower, and improvise some singing.

Hm, I don't really sing in the shower... sometimes at work (when I'm alone & a song is on I want to sing along to) or in the car...

Quote from: SueC on November 07, 2020, 10:53:23I wonder if some people have a rigorous system to make sure they don't forget to listen to anything in their music collection for too long.

Well I don't really have a "system", but: when I don't really know what to listen to (new albums already listened to or nothing new been bought for a while), I take it upon me to "celebrate anniversaries", i.e. in 2020 I would listen to albums from 1980, 1990, 2000, 2010. (I don't own a lot from 1970 or earlier, but that might be added too if I find anything.)

Which can "backfire" a bit, because I might find an old cd and then think "oh that's from 1991, I'll have to wait until next year".  :lol:

Quote from: SueC on November 07, 2020, 10:53:23It's also really nice to ask your friends to bring some music to your house, and play you something they like.

Only if you have friends with taste!  :winking_tongue

I don't wanna think about the many times I heard someone say "you like The Cure, then you'll surely like this too" - in most cases I didn't.  :expressionless:
It's never enough...

SueC

@word_on_a_wing 's favourite romantic songs thread has started my brain on a background trawl through all sorts of songs related to the subject of love.  Here's one it spat out this morning - a song I've not listened to in years, but the lyrics are fabulous.

It doesn't belong in a romantic songs thread, because it's not about romantic love, it's about love more fundamentally.  I like in this song the recognition that the whole idea of some knight or knightess in shining armour rescuing you is immature bollocks, ditto the idea that falling in love with someone, or even being a part of a healthy couple, will solve all your problems - which are ideas frequently peddled in the popular music played on some radio stations I avoid like the plague.  But, nothing gets around having to sort out your own stuff, before you're ready to inflict yourself on another human being in an intimate relationship.  Noone else can or should solve that for you.  So this song talks about love rescuing the narrator, not a lover - and goes on to make that clear.

Some people think that love in this case refers to God, which would potentially really just put that whole "someone else do the work" thing another step removed, especially according to the instant-salvation, I-do-nothing, God-does-it-all-for-me ideas of the fundamentalist evangelical religions that have a case to answer for promoting and glorifying emotional immaturity.  But not everyone who believes in God thinks this way - believe it or not, some people who are that way inclined do take responsibility for their own selves, and for sorting themselves out, and they see God more as a pathway, rather than as a magic-wand fairy.

And you can be agnostic or atheistic, and the main premise of this song still works - love at the core of what you try to do - but not dysfunctional versions that you might have been brainwashed into.  Here's where it helps to actually read about it, starting with Greek ideas - the Greeks have so many different words for love, like eros, ludus, philia, storge, pragma, agape - you can look that up easily if you've never heard of it; here's a useful summary.

According to that classification, I think the most useful aspects of love for changing the self are philia, agape and a healthy form of philautia or self-love/self-care - but the interesting thing is to think about that for yourself and draw your own conclusions.


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