What’s your favourite song?
 
Why is it your favourite song?
 
What makes you play it over and over?
 
How does it make you feel when you turn it up loud?
 
Music is amazing. It changes us physiologically and emotionally. It gets up psyched up and motivated. Think about boxers in a ring or a sporting match. There’s always a particular song to set the scene and get energy buzzing. Alternatively, there might be a song that instantly makes you cry or feel sad taking you back to a moment of pain or grief in your life.
 
Today I’m focusing on the power to psyche up and energise rather than slow down and sadden.
 
I’ve been putting it to the test this week in terms of using it as an experiment to help increase my productivity and I would love for you to give it a try too.
 

Get in the zone with the help of music fuelled brain power

 
Have you heard of Pavlov’s dogs? That famous experiment where his dogs began salivating at the sound of a bell which signalled food was about to appear? The audible noise triggered a brain response in the dogs that sent a message to their saliva ducts to begin producing saliva ready for food.
 
Have you ever thought of something really sour and your saliva starts to increase? Same principle. Your brain is priming itself for its next action.
 
This week I figured if the noise of a bell or the thought of something sour could make us produce saliva, could sound hold the key to getting in the zone and being more productive?
 
I’ve tested it out. Each time I’ve gone to sit down to work (I work off the Pomodoro technique which means I break my day into 4 x 25 min task blocks) I have played one particular piece of music.
 
Yes, this happens to be my favourite song of all time. It takes me back to a time when I was 19, when I was devastated about not going to University and I would use this song as an instant pick-me-up. I decided to use it for this experiment in productivity as it a song that always puts me in a positive frame of mind.
 
It’s Ministers de la Funk featuring Jocelyn Brown and ‘Believe’ if you’re wondering. I love it for the beat, her voice and the words about the importance of believing in yourself.
 
 
I played this piece of music every couple of hours before each Pomodoro block. I made sure I sang along and danced to it. I visualised what I was going to achieve in the next block of activity.
 
It raised my heart rate. I could see it on my Apple watch! I was excited and buzzing and ready for action! At some points I even used it as a break to dance, move around and just enjoy myself. (When you work from home you can do this without looking like a weirdo!).
 
I’ve worked like a machine this week and I’ve enjoyed myself more than I usually would. I can’t listen to music as I am writing as I find it a distraction. I’ve enjoyed the music breaks so much that I’ve compiled a special playlist on Deezer which I have been putting on shuffle during each break. It forces me to have a break and make that psychological disconnect from work for a minute.
 
So, in the same way your first dance song can transport you back to your wedding day or the song that was playing that great Summer with your friends moves you, could you make a conscious decision on a piece of music that’s going to help you kick procrastination out and let productivity in?
 
  • Could it be the song you play at the start of every run?
  • The song at the start of every gym session?
  • The song at the start of cleaning the house?
  • The song at the start of your sales calls?
  • The song you play as you pull into the car park at work?
  • The song you play before you sit down to eat?
What’s your favourite piece of music to get you in the zone? I’d love to know!
 
Gem x