I’m not sure if I’ve told you but I’m having guitar lessons, which I am LOVING!!! It’s challenging. It puts me in a state of ‘flow’, which is where you lose track of time because you’re so engrossed in your activity (‘flow’ is extra good for happiness). And I just feel plain happy when I’m playing and when I’m looking forward to playing.
Turns out playing or listening to music stimulates the release of dopamine, one of natures feel good brain chemicals. Do you get down or anxious? You could try creating a playlist of feel-good songs to uplift you when your mood turns blue. The release of dopamine will be a natural pick me up. I know it makes me feel good.
Listening to music improves your auditory and communication skills which makes for a happier you. The better you communicate the better your interpersonal interactions are and the more satisfying your relationships are. Every theory in Psychology says social support is one of the best protectors against all mental health issues. So listen to or play music to amp up the feel-good connection skills.
Learning an instrument has been found to protect against Alzheimer’s. Apparently people who play instruments are much less likely to develop Alzheimer’s later in life. When I read this I was What the….? What about all the rock stars that take loads of drugs and murder their brain cells? Anyway, apparently learning a new skill keeps the brain active, prevents neural decay, and promotes long lasting mental wellness and happiness.
If I look at my own experience I can see these other happiness boosting effects:
- I get to savour. I get to think about when I’m next going to pick up my guitar with pleasure. I get to savour the experience while I’m playing. And I get to look back on the fun I had and savour that.
- I get a sense of accomplishment and achievement – a necessary factor in being happy. I get to see small improvements and sometimes big ones.
- It gives me a sense of purpose and some goals to work towards – also a necessary factor in being happy (they don’t have to be big to make you happy). As I learn more I can challenge myself with being able to play my next favourite song that was too hard before.
- And when I’m good enough I’ll be able to play with other people which is one of the most fun ways of communicating I’ve seen.
What’s not to love about learning an instrument?
So if you want to give it a go and you live on the Gold Coast, I can recommend the best lessons I’ve ever had (and I’ve tried a few).
Best Guitar Lessons Ever
Shameless plug for Michael Ginsberg of Ginny’s Guitar Lab in Miami. He’s fun and enthusiastic and a great teacher. He comes with my 100% recommendation.
Check him out or better still book yourself in and get happier:
ph: 0414 435 009