Here are five types of ambient sounds to listen to when you need a little dose of stress relief in the thick of a long, stressful day at the office.
1. Upbeat Instrumentals
According to a 2012 study published in the Journal of Positive Psychology, listening to upbeat music can make you feel happier, particularly if you do so with the intention of improving your mood.
So, while the music itself can be enough to lift your spirits, be sure to turn these instrumentals on with the conscious intention of letting go of any negative feelings.
Step outside the office for a brief moment if you need to — whatever it takes to maintain that focus on being happier.
2. Sounds Of Nature
Listening to the sounds of nature — whether they be sounds of running water, birds chirping, or rain drops falling — can put you in a seriously peaceful, tranquil state, even when it feels like stress is literally weighing your body down.
According to research published in The Journal of the Acoustical Society of America, listening to nature sounds contributes immensely to boosting productivity and positivity.
Plus, the natural noises of nature tend to work as a sound-masking system, in which the sounds are random enough that they don't distract you from the task at hand.
3. Jazz Music
Research has demonstrated jazz music to be an excellent way to calm stressful nerves.
Specifically, music with a slow tempo that contains an average 60 beats per minute can cause your brain to sync up with the beat and create alpha brain waves, which occur when you are in your most relaxed state of mind.
This awesome website combines the sounds of jazz music and rain, so you're getting a serious double dose of ambient stress relief.
Listening to Mozart can be great if your stress is so all-consuming that you're having trouble focusing on one particular task.
“The Mozart effect” is said to arouse the brain, but only for a short period of time. So, use this sparingly for when you just need to focus and bang out an assignment on a short deadline.
5. Sound Frequencies
Specific types of sound frequencies can be powerful enough to alter your brain activity.
For example, frequencies that come from drum beats can produce theta brain waves, which can bring your mind into a more meditative state and help you leave stress behind.