“It’s hard to explain exactly what happened, but I felt in that moment that the divine, however we may choose to define such a thing, surely dwells as much in the concrete and the taxi cabs as it does in the rivers, lakes, and mountains. Grace, I realized, is neither time, nor place, dependent. All we need is the right soundtrack.”
Any time I’ve ever had an amazing day, there’s always been one thing in common: Music.
They’ve done studies on music. Do you know what they found it can do?
-Relieve physical pain
-Improve sleep quality
-Help people eat less
-Enhance blood-vessel function
-Relieve symptoms of Depression
-Help people perform better in high-pressure situations
-Reduce anxiety as much as a physical massage
-Increase Desire and Motivation
Those are all obviously very awesome benefits. But, more important than those, I think music has one power that really is incredible:
The ability to change how we see ourselves and the world around us.
Music Changes How I See Myself
I listen to music when I exercise. When I’m running and listening to music, it makes me feel like I’m an olympic long distance runner. When I’m doing weights and listening to music, it makes me feel like King Leonidas from the movie 300.
I also listen to music when write. When I’m writing and listening to music, I always find that my creativity, and ability to create great writing, inevitably comes out through music. I FEEL like a writer when I have certain kinds of music playing. I see myself as a vibrant, capable writer, and find myself getting completely immersed into the role and the experience.
Music Changes How I See The World Around Me
I recently went through a really painful personal experience. It involved some personal legal issues. The first few days were pretty rough. But then, by like the second or third day, everything changed. I spent the entire day working at home, but while doing so, I listened the the entire soundtrack for the Lord of the Rings. I replayed over and over the songs “Dear Bilbo”, “Bag End”, and “The Shire”. The affect? I found myself saying, “You know, everything is ok. Everything really is just fine.” I’d look out my window. It was beautiful outside, with barely a smudge of cloud painting the sky. I felt jolly. It made me smile. I went outside and went for a walk. When I came back, I’d never felt so refreshed in my life.
When I go for a walk, I love to listen to the music from the movie “The Last Samurai”. It has a very authentic, rural, and traditional Japanese feel to it. I notice that, when I listen to that music on my walk, I’m very much at ease. I notice everything around me and appreciate it so much more than I normally would. I find myself noticing the cracks in the sidewalks, the birds in the trees, and the different types of shirts others are wearing. I become very in tune with my environment. It seems so beautiful.
What’s Your Personal Soundtrack?
I believe that music has the power and the ability to shape and mold a person. I believe that, through music, a person can hone and develop certain attributes, emotions, beliefs, and ways of thinking.
I believe that every person should have their own personal soundtrack; a soundtrack filled with music that defines who they are, broadcasts their personality, and that touches them in a way that shapes who they are, what they think, how they feel, and the way they view the world around them.
I have a personal soundtrack. I like to think my personal soundtrack highlights my personality, contributes towards helping me become the person I want to be, and helps me to shape and see the world around me. Here’s my personal soundtrack:
1. David & The Super Mecha (From the movie A.I. – Artificial Intelligence)
2. High Speed – Coldplay
3. Arm Drawing (From the movie 500 Days of Summer)
4. Lover Lay Down – Dave Matthews Band
5. As Time Goes By – Dooley Wilson (Also from the movie Casablanca)
6. Go – Common
7. Strangers In Paradise – Beegie Adair
8. Definitely Unexpected (From the movie The Holiday)
9. Waiting in Vein – Bob Marley
10. Semi-Charmed Life – Third Eye Blind
11. The Turning Point – Killswitch Engage
12. Vultures – John Mayer
13. Instant Crush – Daft Punk
14. Back To Campus Suite – Ben Toth (From the movie Liberal Arts)
15. The Shire (From the movie The Lord of the Rings: The Fellowship of the Ring)
When I listen to the music from my personal soundtrack, I feel like I become myself and the person I want to be all the time. I see myself, and the world around me, in a way that I love and makes me feel really great and hopeful. I feel stronger, more alive, and more motivated to take on life.
What’s the music that speaks to you and makes you want to be the person you love most? What’s the music that helps you see the beauty in the world and those around you?
If you don’t have a personal soundtrack, then I’m challenging you to create one. Come up with a list of 15 songs that make you feel incredible and help you to see the beauty in your life, the world, and those around you. If you’re not sure what those songs may be, go for it. Dig around. Search for them. It’s worth it.
If you’re up for it, I’d love for you to share you favorite song and why it’s your favorite song. What is it about that song that makes you love it so much? What does it do for you? Write it in the comments section below!