10 Ways In Which Music Therapy Can Heal Your Life

 

By Anjali Maini, freelance contributor 

 

“Music is probably the only real magic I have encountered in my life. There’s not some trick involved with it. It is pure and it’s real. It moves, it heals, it communicates and does all these incredible things”- Tom Petty

Music therapy is an established psychological clinical intervention, which is delivered by trained therapist to help people suffering from psychological,emotional, physical and cognitive issues. Here are 10 ways in which music therapy can heal your life:

 

1. Stress buster

The Chances are that at some point in life you have experienced work or academic stress. The soothing effect of music has the power to heal any kind of stress. Music therapy improves your mood, vitality, self-esteem and personality. In turn these improvements lead to stress reduction. Music therapy promotes relaxation of tense muscles, enabling you to easily release some of the tension you carry from stressful events which in turn enables your mind to relax.

 

2. Enhances work performance

It has been observed that interns and employees in the corporate world work really hard. But sometimes hard work doesn’t pay back. If it’s happening with you then it’s a good option to take a music therapy session. Various researches have proved that music therapy sessions at workplace can increase your dedication towards work and in turn facilitate your performance.

 

3. Concentration Booster

Listening to music stimulates the brain and the body mind connection and reactivates brain, prompt memory and improves concentration. According to a study published in August 2007, by Stanford University “Music engages with those areas of brain which are responsible for concentration, prediction and updating events in the brain.

 

4. Give Birth To A Creative And Intellectual Mind

Music therapy itself is a creative tactic of healing your mind, body and soul. Thus it effortlessly gives birth to innovative brain functioning. Music could also make us enter into a “wandering” mode. this wandering mode enables us to daydream or imagine things, which stimulates our creative side. Moreover music therapy may also help one to increase their intellectual power as some researches have shown that it increases our brain plasticity.

 

5. Pumps Down High Levels Of Aggression

Music therapy brings a kind of peace in your mind and body that can pacify both of them. It directs your energy in a positive direction and thus lower high levels of aggression. In today’s world where anger management is a huge problem, music therapy can play a remedial role. People who suffer with high aggression issues can adopt this therapy.

 

6. Remedy For Emotional Pain

Music therapy can heal inner sufferings of the soul without having to actually talk them through. Even a few sessions of music therapy can lower the symptoms of mild depression and anxiety. Various researches and case studies have proved that music therapy helps patients suffering from depression and anxiety to recover fast. Music therapy helps patients suffering from depression and anxiety by lowering their emotional and psychological stress levels and and their need to use drugs. It increases their self acceptance and self awareness behaviors .

 

7.Influence the self-confidence and self esteem

Music therapy is very effective with teens facing low confidence and low self-esteem issues. Music plays an important role in defining a teenager’s world. It helps to improve communication and interaction skills which in turn aid to boost self-confidence and self-esteem. It also helps an individual to pump up their cognitive abilities which in turn helps an individual to communicate and express their knowledge in a better way.

 

8.Releases Physical Strain

Music therapy enhances comfort and manages pain for people of all ages, genders and races. It works in different ways. Music therapy aids patients undergoing chemotherapy, dialysis and brain disabilities such as Parkinson’s disease to release their physical stress and boosts their recovery rate as the vibes and sounds instruments in music therapy release muscles strain,improves blood circulation and
maintains blood pressure.

 

9. Precious Skill Of Child Development

From birth, parents instinctively use music to calm and soothe children, to express their love and joy and to engage and interact. Music experiences at childhood can actually accelerate brain development, particularly in areas of language acquisition and reading skills. Moreover music therapy is very beneficial for children suffering from motor dysfunction. It can gradually improve their motor activity as instrumental tunes and drum beating in music therapy session can stimulate neurons and fine motor parts of kids. Further music therapy is a boon for kids suffering with autism spectrum disorder as the interventions can help to reduce undesired behaviors and increase more appropriate responses in kids.
10. Insomnia

Say no to sleeping pills and shake hand with a music therapist! Yes, music therapy cures insomnia. Music therapy improves sleep quality and duration and as well as reduce the amount of time it takes to fall asleep. It also lessens sleep disturbances.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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10 signs that you are dealing with a narcissist

by Avnie Garg, freelance contributor 

Narcissism is basically a personality disorder comprising of a distended sense of self-importance, a need for entitlement, preoccupation with grandeur, lack of empathy, intolerance for criticism etc. In this sense, narcissism is very different from self-love, self-esteem and self-care. Some of the signs of a narcissist are:

 

1) Controller

A narcissists want people and situations to be under their control. They like things going their way to avoid experiencing feelings of anxiety (yes, narcissists suffer from anxiety).

 

 

2) Self-admirer

 

Most narcissists are their own favorites. They surmise that nobody in the world can match their standards. Nevertheless, they view some really successful and rich people as their ideal; but their list may include anyone from Adolf Hitler to Elon Musk.

 

 

3) Apathetic

They are indifferent to emotions of others. They care the least if anyone is crying before them. They don’t even mind using people emotionally for their own benefit. Egotism is their slogan.

 

4) Feels superior to others

Arrogance is their swagger. They experience feelings of grandiosity and thus cannot handle criticism. They place themselves on the top of the ladder.

 

5) Needs validation

A narcissist wants others to validate his/her standpoint. The phrase “you are (always) right” is music to their ears. Even if you disagree with their opinion, they’ll make sure that you are convinced with what they say before the discussion gets over.

 

6) Irresponsible and blaming 

They do not accept responsibility for anything. Even if they do and the results don’t go their way, they give enough excuses to justify themselves. They may even resort to generalized or specified blaming. Example- a narcissist might say, “yes I got angry but that is because you made me so.”

7) Interrupts conversations

Narcissists cannot really bear anyone going against them or their viewpoint. During a conversation, they‘ll interrupt you the moment you speak something opposite to what they believe in. They expect you to comply with whatever they say.

 

 

8) Belittles others

Many narcissists are sadists; most of them get a kick out of disparaging others. They are pretty confident about themselves and don’t hesitate to criticize others at their face.

 

9) Thinks she/he is not a narcissist

Most of the narcissists, shy or outgoing, have a hard time believing the fact that they actually are narcissists. Ironically, a narcissist often believes that she/he is really good at heart and empathetic towards others.

 

10) Has a history of bad relationships

They have had romantic relationships which ended up as a disaster. Also, their professional life would have been quite messy. Simply, they cannot handle any kind of relationship well.

 

 

After you identify that the person you are dealing with is a narcissist, you need to accept his/her limitations and try to be compassionate. Devise some ways to express your own self-worth. Give only sincere compliments and comply only when you want to.

 

 

7 ways in which we delude ourselves

 

by Ridhi Murari, Freelance Contributor

 

Resistance stems from a deep and intense struggle between wanting to change and wanting to hold on to our habitual patterns of reacting, emoting and behaving; more often than not in a desperate attempt in protecting ourselves from facing our demons. When we actually confront a problem which is seen by us as unmanageable or difficult we fall into a pattern of deluding ourselves; here are 7 ways in which we do that:

 

 

  1. Publishing Odd Future GIF-downsized_largeREPRESSION When we forget things we find unpleasant, it is called repression. We all have incidents that shake our core from within, hitting us with the impact of a physical blow. This is where repression comes in. The thoughts that flow through our minds in this stage are typically, “Oh, I’m so mad at her that I can actually pick up a matchstick and burn her in hell, oh God, how did I become so violent? Let me not think of her this way. “

 

 

 

  1. sad love and hip hop GIF by VH1-downsized_large            SUPPRESSION- When one is aware that a particular feeling, thought, or want has made way into ones consciousness and yet they make a deliberate effort to not dwell on it―one, by not thinking about it (internally) and two, by not acting on it (externally). for eg a wife may be peeved about her husband’s behavior but because of some guests around her, she may control her reaction at that time. But one should also be aware of the possibility that these impulses and thoughts might make way again, and that they will need to be dealt with at the time that they do.

 

              

 

               

  1. world series no GIF by Brett Eldredge-downsized_large           DEPRIVATION- He has it and I don’t and the endless discourses on how the world is an unfair place to live in which follow; such comparison is inevitable, someone has the intangibles we want. This deprived state leads to complaining, resenting, and dwelling in a spiral of negativity and eventually, being exhausted by the process, seeking refuge in a sea of optimism through any means possible. PS- Beware of over-enthusiastic people, it’s often a reversal of the deprived state that makes them overjoyed.

 

 

 

  1. Brendan Fraser What GIF-downsized_large                   AMBIGUITY INTOLERANCE- “But you have to tell me what do I do next?” “If I knew what to do why would I come to you?”; to avoid those uncomfortable situations of awareness, reflection and introspection, we would do anything in the world for another being to dictate the steps of our life so I can later blame them for all of it. The degree to which an individual is comfortable with uncertainty, unpredictability, conflicting directions, and multiple demands. In essence, tolerance for ambiguity is manifest in a person’s ability to operate effectively in an uncertain environment.

 

                                                                                                                                                                              

  1. like GIF-downsized_large                                         INERTIA- “Okay, let’s do one thing since I’ve tried everything from my end, there is nothing more I can do so let it be. This is my fate and destiny, so what’s the point?”. This is the world of the inertia, of people who have given up and entered the realm of learned helplessness. The psychological meaning of the word “inertia” implies an indisposition to change – a certain “stuckness” due to human programming. It represents the inevitability of behaving in a certain way, to the extent that it may have been indelibly inscribed somewhere in the brain.
  2. routine GIF-downsized_largeROUTINE SEEKING- There are, among us, people who need to know what to do at each step. Bound by routine, they are beings who hate stepping out of their comfort zones. Change is uncomfortable for most of us, even if this resistance does not manifest itself in the form of an incessant need to stick to a staunch routine. Not that all routines are bad. We need routines, but the question is: who is the master? us or the routine.

 

 

 

7. hd GIF-downsized_largeENTITLEMENT– We all want things. But some people feel they are entitled to whatever it is they want, and they feel they deserve it all now. That can make for very difficult relationships, a lot of disappointment, and never receiving what is most important in life.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

8 Ways of Controlling Technology Addiction in Children

Shraddha Gupta,  freelance contributor

Due to the frequent use of technology young minds are becoming dull as well as unimaginative and creativity is becoming endangered. While many parents think that they are aiding their children by getting technological devices like smartphones, laptops and tablets etc.; they are only partially correct. Without the proper control and restriction on use of the internet, children can very easily become addicted to social media platforms. The boon of technology then, starts to become a bane.
But if the right controls and limits are set, parents can prevent this addiction and children can benefit more from the internet than they would lose. Following are the ways in which this addiction can be controlled or prevented:
1. Setting a Time Limit
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Time limits for the usage of technology should be set for children and it should be made sure that they are adhered to. It might be troublesome for parents in the beginning, but they should remain firm. This will ensure that the child uses technology more for learning and reading. Children can be motivated to make this restriction, a habit by rewards and punishments.
2. Using the Token Economy Technique
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Token economy is a form of behaviour modification designed to increase desirable behaviour and decrease undesirable behaviour with the use of tokens that the children would receive after displaying desirable behaviour. The collected tokens can then be exchanged for whatever they want. Tokens can also be taken away on display of bad behaviour.
3. Self Control
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Children at a tender age try to imitate their parents to learn behaviour. This behaviour generally becomes permanent and doesn’t change very easily is learned. If children see their parents on screens most of the time, they will tend to do the same. Children will have a natural attitude of depending on technology if they see their parents doing the same.
4. Find Ways to make Technology Habits Productive
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A technology obsessed child may be trying to find a passion for him or herself. Try and channelize that into a positive path and enroll him/her in various classes like programming, sports, dancing, animation etc. for him/her to be sure of whether they want to pursue their life in this field as a career or if it is just a hobby.
5. Using the Technique of Aversive Conditioning
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Parents can instill the hazards of using technology excessively like obesity, weakening of eyesight, lowering of concentration span etc. to make their children more aware about why they want them to leave this addiction. This will also give the children an insight that their parents are caring and they just want the best for them always.
6. Motivational Interviewing
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This technique involves structured conversations that can help children increase their motivation to overcome technology addiction by, for example, helping them recognize the difference between how they are living at present that is, behind screens and how they wish to live in future while spending real time with parents and peers and see what they were missing out on.
7. Self-monitoring of Urges
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Another way to foster detachment from urges to check social media almost every 5-10 minutes, is to have teens use self monitoring procedures to keep track of the internal and external cues that stimulate the urge, their mood, how long the urge lasted, coping skills used to cope with the urge and how successful or unsuccessful these coping strategies were.
8. Urge Surfing
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In this technique, teens can be taught to label these internal sensations and cognitive preoccupations as an urge or craving that is beginning to develop and to foster an attitude of detachment and dis-identification regarding this wave of desire, initially through training and support from parents. If after practicing this for a while, it becomes easier for the teens to delay and distract this urge and eventually, their addiction diminishes.

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7 non-clichéd ways to therapeutically meditate

Komal Sharma, Freelance Contributor 

”Meditation is great, but I don’t know where to start/ but it isn’t going forward/but I don’t understand it”
The rationale behind this article is to understand that the process of meditation can never be put across in hard lines. It is happening, right now, as I type, fully aware of my being and senses. I hope these tenets will guide you to curate your own method, instead of following one of the gazillion techniques which you’d probably end up sacrificing third day into practice; because meditation, like love, is a personal experience.

1. Sensation
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Do you love it when someone smoothly runs their finger on your arm? Does the soft caress of grass against your feet melts you? Does warm water give your body an immense therapeutic satisfaction?
Sure it feels good, but how can you use it? – By feeling each drop of water interacting with the cell in your body. By sensing each grass strand tickle and tingle your skin. Let yourself be free to thoroughly travel through your sensations, lose the track of time and, just, let yourself be.

2. Singing Bowl :
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Every bowl speaks to you a different song. How willing are you to listen?
Each bowl has its own personality; you know it when you ‘choose’ yours. From its appearance, to its size and rhythm that’s produced, each aspect will pull correct chords within you. Delving in music you produce will help you connect your frequency to it, and you will experience a convergence and expansion of your energy.

3. Catching a tone in music:
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Love listening to music?
From classical to EDM – Catch the sound of any instrument you like (flute/drums); mentally focus on it (but DO NOT STRESS). Keep the process as easy as you can. If you’re able to focus from 3-minutes at a stretch consistently, it means you have mastered the art. Now you’d not only have great taste in music but also an extended attention span and focus.

4. Trataka yoga
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Don’t like shutting your eyes close? Ever caught yourself looking blankly across the room and found it so relaxing that you lost yourself in it? Then this practice is absolutely for you. FOCUS. Gaze internally (on an object you might imagine) or externally (at moon, or flower). Initially, it will be strenuous to keep staring mindfully at an imagined or physical object. With practice,though, you’ll find it immensely liberating.

5. Mandala:
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Got a hand of an artist or not, this is a proven way to meditate. Get yourself a compass and colors. It is said that the Mandala that you draw is the state of your mind. Eventually you will be drawing more vibrant and lovely Mandalas. Also, you can get yourself a Mandala book and just color it. Drawing Mandala or just doodling is a way to bring your meta-feeling in physical existence. Worth a try, isn’t it?

6. Thoughtlessness
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The key here is not to aim to be thoughtless. Yogis focus on the Chakra located at the center of your crown. Gradually with due practice, you observe your physical body as a third being’s consciousness. With years of practice, one can switch their thoughts on and off as and when required. You save yourself from the thoughts that potentially can cause harm.

7. Movement meditation
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I know many people who have excruciating time sitting plain idle. Your actions will lead you as you pay vivid attention to them and let it scintillate your imagination. The way your hands touch cold and warm objects and the sound of crushing leaves under your feet. The feeling of wind gently passing through your hair and the heavy sigh you take after a long hike. You can go around places and still have the calm within you; one may call it ‘wandering peace’.

If you have gone through all the ways mentioned above- you’d have realized that it is not about which way is better, it is about the way which is closest of your style-of-being.

 

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10 indications that you’re overthinking stuff

Shivangi Srivastava, Freelance Contributor

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Do things keep playing in your head on repeat mode?
Are you always trying to crack some secret code?
Does your sleep ditch you at night?
Are you constantly worrying about your future?

To think about things or situations in life is necessary but when ‘thinking’ goes overboard, that’s when we start facing problems in life. Over-thinking is a state of constant worrying, where our mind starts to work extra hard, unnecessarily.
Here are 10 indications that will help you understand if you’re over thinking it:

1) You’re hesitant when it comes to giving a voice to your opinions.

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You may find it very difficult to share your thoughts and opinions regarding a certain topic or situation because you fear that people will JUDGE you for how you think and for the kind of choices you’ve made or are currently making in life.

2) All the possibilities are only assessed as either ‘BAD’ or ‘WORSE’.

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For you, ‘WORST-CASE SCENARIOS’ are the only possible scenarios. You may find yourself focusing too much on all the things that can possibly go wrong. Good outcomes are just a matter of luck for you. Also, you tend to be over critical about yourself. People who overthink rarely are able to see their own positive sides because they’re too busy evaluating themselves on their negatives.

3) It seems as if the whole world is conspiring against you.

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You may feel as if people around you observe all the things that you do and judge you for it. It may seem as if everybody around you is talking about you, is criticizing your actions and has formed strong opinions AGAINST you.

4) You believe that one must know ‘EVERYTHING’ in order to understand you.

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You try to include all the possible details while telling somebody about anything. In your opinion, missing out on any piece of information would mean that the message was not conveyed exactly how you wanted it to be and now people won’t understand you and may form negative opinions about you.

5) Creative skills are mostly used in decoding ‘HIDDEN’ messages which may not exist at all.

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Being an over-thinker, it is possible for you to consume your energy in looking for underlying meanings for every word that you hear. You may find yourself constantly worrying if somebody’s motive was to indirectly tell or indicate something to you while conversing with you.

6) You cross-check the messages you’re about to send multiple times.

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It takes you a lot of time to send a message to somebody. You keep going through the messages, again and again, deleting or editing its content. You have the notion of sending an error-free or so-called ‘perfect message’ so that the person on the receiving end does not take you for a dumb individual.

7) Maladaptive daydreaming
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As an over thinker, you experience frequent and intrusive daydreams that can disrupt your everyday tasks and quality of life. Certain situations are often stuck in repeat mode inside your head or you start imagining things that have no end to them and eventually find it very difficult to come to reality and do your daily tasks.

8) You take ‘LITTLE’ things very ‘SERIOUSLY’.
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While having a conversation with somebody, you may find yourself taking little things very seriously. There may be times when people are just talking or discussing things on a very general level but you might take things personally and feel disturbed. It sometimes gets a little difficult to convince you that everything’s okay because you usually want every piece of information to make up your mind.

9) Your behaviour and actions are mostly based on your ‘ASSUMPTIONS’.
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The term ‘over-thinking’ itself suggests thinking more than required; thinking more than there is to think actually. Over-thinkers usually pre-assume a lot of things (basically, jumping to conclusions) and later are found constantly worrying about things that may or may not exist. This eventually leads them to behave oddly around people.

10) Anxiety knocks and blows good night’s sleep away.
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Overthinking often generates anxiety and results in panic attacks. This anxiety holds you back and disrupts your normal functioning. Messing up one thing might mean messing up the entire thing, in your opinion. You keep ruminating about it and thus, face trouble sleeping.