For many of us, picking up a musical instrument can seem intimidating at first. Often, it can feel like there’s so much to learn between reading notes, new finger positions, and even creating a sound that it can seem overwhelming. However, it’s important to remember that you don’t have to be an instant virtuoso to enjoy learning and playing an instrument. Whether you’re looking for a quick break while working 9 to 5 or you’re just grooving on a Sunday afternoon, taking a few minutes each week to learn an instrument can have lots of surprising benefits!
Learning a musical instrument is a fantastic way to boost your mood! Given all of life’s current stressors, it can be challenging to find a moment to unwind. The process of learning a musical instrument provides some much needed mindful “you” time that helps you fully engage in the here and now. Additionally, learning an instrument helps build a sense of empowerment, achievement, and expression.
Even though listening to music is a great way to activate the brain, playing an instrument acts as a full brain work out. Playing a musical instrument can lead to strong increases in blood flow to the brain. If you sit down and play for 30 minutes a day, you can give yourself a big boost in your cognitive functioning. Also, playing an instrument leads to better communication between the brain’s hemispheres which improves problem solving. Next time you reach for that Redbull for a mid-afternoon pick-me-up, try a quick jam session instead!
Let’s Get Physical (Benefits)
There’s a number of health benefits regardless of what age you start learning an instrument. Research has discovered that playing an instrument can lower blood pressure, decrease heart rate, reduce levels of cortisol linked to stress, and enhance our immunological response, helping us to fight off viruses. Additionally, learning an instrument helps increase reaction time, fine motor functioning, and helps prevent age-related hearing loss.
Connection with Others
Creating music is a great way to connect with others. Humanity has an inherent love for music so sharing your passion for music can be a great way to establish friendships and grow your music skills. If you’re intimidated to start this musical journey alone, find a friend who can learn with you. Also, a social distance jam session or concert via Zoom call are fun ways to connect and share your music with friends and family!
Remember that learning an instrument takes time and that it’s okay to feel frustrated on your musical journey. Keep in mind that it’s a process, try not to be critical of yourself, and enjoy creating music and all the mental and physical benefits that come with it!
Looking to expand your music horizon? Check out “Discover A Whole New World of Music” under “Pass The Time” in the Luv Your Life App!