5 Benefits of Listening to Music While Meditating

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Listening to music while meditating can be extremely beneficial when it comes to maintaining focus and making the most of your practice.

Depending on the type of meditation you are practising, certain sounds are integrated into the session, whether that’s chanting, nature sounds, or binaural beats.

Using music to aid meditation is not a new phenomenon. In fact, even those who have never meditated can find certain pieces of music deeply calming, finding themselves lost in the rhythm and melodies.

Classical music can be a great accompaniment to both meditation and yoga, while music at a certain tempo can decrease the speed of your brain, putting you into a deep state of calm.

Can you Listen to Music whilst Meditating?

Listening to music while meditating can be very beneficial, so long as you choose the right music. The music should aid focus and concentration, not detract from the meditation itself. If you find yourself daydreaming, it’s probably not the right song choice!

Combining meditation and music is good for your body and your mind, but it’s important you choose the right music for your practice. A Kundalini practice may utilise powerful music to bring its practitioners into the present moment.

Many yoga teachers play quiet music in the background, to relax participants without detracting from the practice itself.

If the music doesn’t aid focus and concentration, there is an argument that it shouldn’t be used.

While playing your favourite album is a good way to liven up a meditation session, it’s unlikely to be doing much good if you find yourself lost in thought remembering your favourite concert!

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How to be Mindful of Sound?

A sound mindfulness course can help you to integrate music and sound into your mindfulness meditation. Becoming aware of the noises around you is a great way to stay present, and listening to the specific musical instruments and sounds in a piece of music can help you to focus. 

We are often taught during guided meditations to focus on the noises we can hear, whether it’s the whir of the fridge or the sound of the birds outside.

Being mindful of sound is a great way to bring us into the present and keep us focused. An online sound mindfulness course can help you learn to focus on the various sounds around you. 

Music can be used in the same way. It’s very common that we might listen to a song and not truly hear it.

Try to mindfully listen to the music. That is, noticing the individual sounds, the individual instruments, the arrangement and the melody. Become aware of anything that you hear; volume changes, vibrations, a change in pace.

Mindfully listening to music in this way can be deeply relaxing, and many people find they appreciate a song in a whole new way!

Sound Mindfulness Course - mindful listening
Try mindfully tuning into the sounds around you

Types of Music to Listen to When Meditating

We all have different tastes in music, and what works for one person may not work for another. Binaural beats, nature sounds, relaxing music, chanting and sound baths can all promote deep relaxation, allowing you to make the most of your meditation. 

Binaural Beats

Binaural beats are often used to induce a deep state of relaxation. They are said to increase focus and concentration, and they’re often used in therapy to ease anxiety and stress.

The term ‘binaural beat’ refers to the difference in hertz between the tones entering the right ear and the left. The effect can vary depending on the frequency, with some patterns aiding concentration, and others encouraging relaxation.

Nature Sounds

Nature sounds can help keep you focused, and they’re especially useful if you’re trying to sleep late at night.

Nature sounds are often in the form of singing birds, the gentle sound of rain at the window or the noise of the ocean.

These sounds are calming and comforting, allowing you to relax and take a break.

While we’d all like to be able to teleport to an actual nature reserve to hear real-life nature sounds each time we meditate, sometimes we have to make do!

Guided meditations and online videos often use nature sounds, so simply plug in your headphones and imagine yourself on your favourite beach!

Sound Mindfulness Course - Nature
Nature sounds can be remarkably calming

Relaxing Music

Relaxing music can be used to lower our heart rate and decrease our stress levels.

Ambient music is often used in yoga and meditation classes, as the perfect backdrop to our practice.

Listening to relaxing music before you go to bed can help you sleep better, and those who struggle to focus while meditating may find relaxing music helps.

Chanting

Chanting is usually practised during a mantra meditation. Mantras are syllables, words or phrases that are repeated during a meditation, either whispered, spoken or chanted.

Chanting your mantra can help keep you focused, as when you find your thoughts wander, you can simply come back to the mantra.

Try to feel the vibrations resonating in your throat, chest and the rest of your body. Chanting can be very powerful, especially in a group setting.

If you attend a guided meditation or undertake a sound mindfulness course online, you’ll usually be given a mantra or encouraged to think of one of your own.

Sound Baths

Sound baths are a meditative experience where participants are ‘bathed’ in sound.

The sound is usually created using crystal bowls, gongs and gemstone bowls.

You’ll feel the vibrations wash over your body, and many people find themselves relaxing into a deeply meditative state.

Sound baths often use instruments like gongs or bowls

The Benefits of Using Sound while Meditating

Listening to music or sound while meditating can aid focus and bring about a range of mental and physical health benefits. Tuning into specific sounds can ease anxiety, reduce symptoms of depression and even lower your blood pressure. 

Using sound while meditating often leads to a range of mental and physical health benefits.

It can ease anxiety, lower blood pressure and increase the flow of energy throughout the body.

Chanting and sound baths especially can help you feel empowered and invigorated, ready to start the day with a fresh attitude.

Long-term, you’ll experience better immunity, lower blood pressure and improved digestion.

Listening to nature sounds and relaxing music as you drift off at night will help you sleep more soundly, so you can wake up energised and ready to face the day ahead.

Key Facts

  1. Listening to music while meditating can aid focus and help you make the most of your practice.

  2. It can also bring about a number of mental and physical health benefits.

  3. Mindfully listening to music can bring you into the present and help you develop a newfound appreciation for certain pieces of music.

  4. A sound mindfulness course online can help teach you to make the most of the sounds around you during your practice.

  5. Binaural beats, nature sounds, relaxing music and chanting can all be used during a meditation practice to improve relaxation and aid focus.