Music As Therapy

 Music As Therapy

Have you ever heard a song that makes you cry?  Makes you mad?  Makes you happy?  Music can be therapeutic. It can be cathartic and help someone express feelings that they need to feel.  But it can also help shift a mood or inspire someone to continue on a path or to set new goals for their life.

Using Music to Feel Good

Using music as therapy, one of the coping skills that I often recommend to my clients is to create a playlist for feeling good.  This playlist should contain songs that are inspiring, that help them feel positive about themselves and about the world.  One song that I have recently added to my recommendation list is Brave by Sara Bareilles. To see the video on YouTube, click here.

The message that she speaks is truth.  She encourages people to say whatever they need to say, to be themselves, and to be true to themselves.  It is a simple principle to understand, but very difficult to live out in some situations.  There is health and wholeness that comes with being true to oneself, to being brave, to say what needs to be said.  Sara says about her song,  “there’s so much honor and integrity and beauty in being able to be who you are, [and] it’s important to be brave because by doing that you also give others permission to do the same.”

In psychological terms, this would be called congruence.  It is a simple principle of being true to yourself, inside and out.  With congruence comes an increased sense of peace and often a decrease in anxiety and depression.  Helping people stop trying to convince themselves of something, or to stop pretending to be someone they are not, can be liberating work.

Here’s the challenge, what do you need to be brave about in your life today?  What do you need to say to yourself or to someone else to move forward and be true to yourself?  Download the song, Brave, and be inspired!


Rachel Harrison, LPC, NCC is a psychotherapist in Durango, CO who loves to work with artists.  To learn more, click here.


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