I used to watch a lot of TV and movies but I don’t really do that any more. The problem with visual media is that it’s audible too, which means potential for more triggers. They can be really subtle at times so you won’t react massively. These little disruptions at the wrong time however, that can be the straw that broke the camels back.
Songs are a lot shorter so avoiding triggers completely is actually so much easier to achieve with music.
It terms of mental management music is perfect because it’s emotive. This is part of the reason I’ve focused on it so much this year. You can create emotional playlists for different situations. This doesn’t just reduce triggers but gives you a portable, adaptive mental health management tool. This can give you a little bit of a safety net, especially in situations that you are unable to control.
What you do is you select songs that make you feel like you want to. If you need to release emotions pick a highly emotional song and use crying to release some of that build up. That can stop you from getting a meltdown, if negative emotions are the issue. If you are recovering from a meltdown use music that makes you feel calm or happy. The music will be a very individual choice but if it’s not right your mind will let you know. Before long your mind actually confirms by not rejecting, so you know when your listening to the right track.
Now there is one warning, using this technique when the cause is a unresolvable trapped thought can have a downside. You may feel yourself and happy for a short time but when that thought repeats you can crash really hard into burnout.
It will always be best to find some way of getting closure for repeating thoughts. In any way you can, but once you have and the thought dissipates, using this technique helps speed up mental recovery.
This works well really with any music you feel that mental connection to (the music type itself is unimportant because it’s the feeling of the song you connect to). With Au-thentic music I believe that connection would be a lot deeper, making this technique even more effective.
All the best
Words – Ross A Fraser
Graphic Design App – Canva