Mental health is always an important issue but it has undoubtedly become more prevalent in 2020 as a result of COVID-19.
People around the world have been stuck at home, attempting various types of hobbies to keep the COVID blues at bay. From yoga to sourdough making, we have seen it all. But what if we told you that there are some other activities you can pick up which are proven to increase your mental health?
According to a new study, learning and playing a musical instrument can have a positive impact on mental health by promoting relaxation and happiness.
In a scientific study commissioned by Spotify UK, almost nine in ten adults reported that playing a musical instrument had a positive impact on their mental health. Out of the 89% of study participants who reported improved mental health; 56% felt more relaxed, 48% felt “satisfied” and 43% felt more “peaceful” after playing their instrument, while over a third reported that playing music gave them “a sense of purpose in life.”
The study was conducted as a part of the Where Is My Mind? podcast, a project dedicated to examining the intersection between music and mental health. Part of the podcast saw host Niall Breslin gift 400 ukeleles to people struggling with mental health issues. After becoming proficient in just one song, the results were already overwhelmingly positive. One participant stated:
“Learning the ukulele was such a challenge, but like anything you just have to stick with it, follow the advice and stay focused. Not thinking about the news or being attached to social media was hugely satisfying and gave me a sense of purpose. I will definitely continue playing, and would encourage anyone who finds themself in isolation, and facing challenges with their mental health to do the same.”
So, what are you waiting for? After all that time, you can finally pull your primary school recorder out of the closet.
One sign that depression has kicked back in is realizing I haven’t even touched my guitar in two weeks. It’s the non-work activity that brings me the most joy and I’ll sit right next to it all day and never even think about picking it up.
— Jon Perri (@_jonperri) July 22, 2020