Music and emotion

Music, especially guitar, has always been a big part of my life. Some of my earliest memories are seeing people with guitars on TV when I was maybe 4 years old and just being mesmerized. I wouldn’t get my first real guitar until 10 years later but, from that moment, I was hooked. I played for hours after school every day. Playing guitar and listening to music gave me a way to tap into my emotions. Some emotions I had as a teenager – like anger or sadness – gave way to joy after playing a while. And other emotions that I probably didn’t know that I had and didn’t know how to express surely came through also. Music has a way of speaking to us on an emotional level even if we don’t play an instrument. A sad song on the radio can make you cry. Another song might take you back to a moment in the past.

Sometimes it is hard to put words to what we are feeling. Sometimes we just feel. We don’t have to give every feeling a name. And this is why music, whether we play it or listen to it, can be so therapeutic. Music lets us just feel what it is we have to feel.

Like music, counseling can help us by giving us a sacred place to feel whatever emotions we have to feel. It can allow us to open up to ourselves. Experiencing our emotions in such a way allows us to get more in tune with our mind and body and to truly heal.