Music Therapy: Good for What Ails You

Fox's U-Bet in plastic squeeze bottle.
Fox’s U-Bet in plastic squeeze bottle. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Earlier today (Wednesday) as I drowned my sorrows in Death by Chocolate ice cream with chocolate syrup, my husband said, “Who needs Prozac when you have chocolate, right?”  Funny dear.

He was trying to cheer me, and often his joking is helpful, but today the chocolate was better.  I realize eating is not the healthiest form of coping though, either mentally or physically.  I am working on other forms of coping. I use mediation, art therapy, journaling and blogging. In fact, I wrote a very raw blog post before I ate the ice cream, but I decided not to post that one (you’re welcome).

Today I would like to talk about music as a coping tool.  I don’t know if what I am thinking of would technically be called music therapy, but hey, we’re not technical here, right?  A wonderful blog post I just read inspired this.  Author Jane Kirkpatrick was responding to a question about whether her background in mental health played a part in her historical novels. She said it did and she also said:

“I worked for 17 years on an Indian reservation and I know that some of the healers there said that when they went in to meet with someone ill they asked three questions. The answers determined how far from health the person had fallen.  The three questions:  When was the last time you sang; when was the last time you danced; and when was the last time your told your story.” Mental Health and Historical Novels by Jane Kirkpatrick

This version of “music therapy” intrigued me.  It is true, I remember singing in the shower one morning, and realizing that I had not done that in a long time.  As the healers said, it was a sign that my depression had lifted.

In addition to singing, I have found listening to music very helpful.  I have different music for different moods.  I imagine you do as well. Just a couple of my favorites:

Spiritual:  My Kindness Shall Not Depart From Thee

Comfort Josh Groban‘s You Are Loved

For anger and depression: Brandon Flowers‘ Crossfire, and several songs by Linkin Park

One night, a friend of mine created a list of suicide songs, which I contributed to (we were both in a very dark place), but I’m not going to share any of those, because it would not be very therapeutic.   The point is there is music for every mood!

Jane Kirkpatrick’s post made me think, what other ways could I use music for coping?

Dancing?  Hmmm, I wonder if Just Dance (WII) with the kids count?

Or how about playing an instrument?  I wish I could play the piano.  I don’t have time to learn right now, but I do have a tin whistle and instruction book that I bought for my husband.  I wonder. . .

I’ll have to give these things a try and report back.  In the meantime, have you used music therapy?  What songs do you listen to?  Do you dance?  Or play an instrument?

And just in case you need it–Top 100 Songs About Chocolate— ahh, the best of both worlds!


  1. If you dont want to post a raw one here, I will post it on my blog and not use your name!!
    Your raw words are powerful and I look forward to them,
    But hey Trader Joes 72% cocoa works too!

  2. I use music all the time. I have a list of my favorites for different moods or different days. I also have learned how to play the violin (I am not very good but it is therapy). I do like to dance to favorite music and it is healing. Great look at the value of music. I use music and exercising to ease the pain and pound out the hurt. It always amazes me how the process works. I do still wish I could do the art therapy but…

  3. I know music has great power to lift or to pull down. I was listening to a Brasilian jazz singer about relationship sorrows and realized I was near tears. It was a powerful moment. Since then I have made sure that my music is that of the lifting sort. Some of it is soul searching, but still going toward the up. Even when angry and hurt, the music has to lift me out of that, for I do not want to stay there but to find peace with the problems, and forgiving for myself and others.

  4. Stormwarning Thank you for your response. I asked for clroificatian and it is why I asked the question in my first response: So what are you saying…you don’t see a need for a civilian to have a 30 round magazine? Or you don’t think any civilian should be allowed to have a 30 round magazine? When people with the power to make laws read statements like yours, they may agree and use your statement to bolster thier argument and want to make a law. When I read you statement it scares me a little. I don’t know you, but if I heard a lawmaker make the same statement you did, I would be terrified as we can all assume what the next step would be. It would be to make a law keeping EVERYONE from owning a 30 round mag. Like you, I don’t have one either. I have seen them for sale and agree they seem to be nothing but a novelty. However, once these get banned, the slippery slope has been stepped on. Next, its 15 rd mags, then 10 until finally we all have single shot 22 long rifles with serial numbered ammunition and the need for a permit to fire a single round.This is what our govt does all the while saying that they are not taking our 2nd amendment rights away, they are simply making a few rules to keep us safe. They use the justification such as I don’t see the need for a civilian to own a 30 rd mag . I can’t help but feel our founding fathers wanted us on a even keel with those that would rule us. I am sure they did not intend for progress to occur in weaponry and for we the people to be allowed to own nothing more than a simple musket. I believe the second amendment has been whittled away too much already. Anything that lends teeth to a govt that can chisel away our rights do not sit well with me. Thus, I myself do not see a reason for ME to have a 30 rd magazine at this time, but I can certainly see why a 30 round magazine would be invented and why a civilian might want and/or need a 30 round magazine. I am not trying to be argumentative with you or anyone. If you are here, then I have a good idea on your views of the 2nd amendment. It’s not you specifically that I am worried about. Its your statement when it is made by someone that may not believe as strongly in the 2nd amendment as you and I do. That’s way scarier to me than a psycho with a 30 round magazine.

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