Are you considering learning how to play an instrument?
Perhaps you’re debating whether it’s worth the time and effort, as well as the investment in the instrument, classes and equipment? While there are many costs to consider before you take up playing, there are also many benefits of learning an instrument that will make it worth your while. Here, we explore five reasons to start learning a musical instrument this year.
It can reduce anxiety and stress
According to an article published by Harvard Medical School, many studies have shown that music can reduce anxiety and stress.
“An Italian study of 24 healthy volunteers, half of whom were proficient musicians, found that tempo is important. Slow or meditative music produced a relaxing effect; faster tempos produced arousal, but immediately after the upbeat music stopped, the subjects’ heart rates and blood pressures came down to below their usual levels, indicating relaxation.”
It can improve your drive to succeed
Learning to play an instrument is no walk in the park. Players must dedicate many hours of practice to learning and often will repeatedly fail to play a song or melody before they get it right. For this reason, learning to play any instrument requires a huge amount of drive, determination, and discipline. If you have the motivation and perseverance to do this, you can carry these skills into other areas of your life.
It can boost your confidence
When you succeed at something you’ve been practising for a long time, you get a great sense of achievement. This reinforces the age-old saying that you can achieve anything you put your mind to, so long as you put the time and effort in. Ultimately, this boosts confidence and makes you less afraid to try new things in future. Plus, if you’re learning you’ll inevitably play in front of others, whether that’s your teacher, friends and family, or an audience later down the line. This teaches you how to deliver with confidence under pressure.
It can widen your social circle
Learning to play an instrument can also lead you to develop friendships with people you may not have met otherwise. For instance, if you attend group sessions, you’ll meet likeminded people keen to learn. Once you’ve reached a certain level, you may want to join a group, orchestra, or band which will widen your social circle. If you play gigs or concerts in the future, you’ll inevitably socialise with people that come to watch and support. Not only is this great for building valuable friendships, but also helps to improve teamwork and communication skills.
It can enhance your memory and ability to learn
Playing a musical instrument is also said to improve your memory and ability to learn new things. An article in Psychology Today states that playing music, “helps you expand your working memory capacity [and] also improves the ability to think”. In addition, it states that “music training also helps improve certain memory capabilities outside of music. For example, musicians show improvements in auditory-verbal memory and auditory attention”.
With so many benefits to learning a musical instrument, why not give it a go this year?