8 Pros and Cons of Music While Working

Do you throw on some headphones while you work? Does the radio play in the background through your employer’s overhead speakers? Music is unique because it engages the entire mind at once. In some ways, it’s like instant meditation because it can create a singular focus for a project you’ve got to get done. It can also be an intense distraction if you love to sing along with your favorite songs because the focus goes to the music instead of the work. Are you debating the pros and cons of music while working? Then here are some of the key points to consider before you turn the volume up on your favorite playlist.

Here Are the Pros of Music While Working

1. Ambient noise enhances personal creativity.
Many of the problems that people have with music is that they play it too loud while they are working. Any type of music will interfere with the creative process if the volume is too loud. When it is placed in an environment as ambient noise, however, the creativity levels are enhanced because it encourages the mind to begin thinking in abstract ways.

2. It refines the way that people work.
Certain traits that we develop as the days go by can be refined thanks to music. This is especially true when it comes to our fine motor skills and our ability to determine audio frequency differences. Children who are learning how to play an instrument, for example, have increases in both of these areas compared to children who are not learning an instrument as part of their instruction.

3. It improves a person’s visual attention.
All music has the ability to improve visual attention, but classical music tends to be the best. Even if someone has suffered a mental impairment, such as a stroke, music has the ability to enhance the visual focus on a singular task or object that is in front of them.

4. Interactive music helps to maintain energy levels.
People who listen to music over the day feel like they have more energy left over in reserve compared to those who do not. Ever heard the expression “You are how you feel” when describing how the mind works? If you feel sick, then you tend to be sick more often. Music limits the focus on the negative because the mind is stimulated based on the type of music heard. That’s why you can even feel more energetic after listening to rap when compared to listening to jazz.


Here Are the Cons of Music While Working

1. The wrong music can create a lot of distractions.
These distractions may be good or bad. Inspiring music may cause people to daydream. Romantic music might cause someone to think about a lost love. Listening to 90′s grunge might create nostalgia. Although these distractions are less severe than the presence of silence, it is important to select the right music for the working environment to minimize distractions.

2. The mind can become too stimulated.
Although creative centers are stimulated through the forced abstract thinking that music causes, the mind can actually become too stimulated in this way. Some forms of information must be absorbed through a conventional method of understanding, such as geometric proofs. Being too stimulated will cause the information to be ignored instead of retained.

3. Continuous exposure to music could harm hearing.
Because many people tend to listen to loud music while working to eliminate background noise distractions, the volume levels tend to be placed at unhealthy levels. Anything above 85 decibels can cause someone physical pain and reduce their ability to hear over time. Headphones on at full volume while working may be the equivalent of over 100 decibels. Now multiply that over an 8 hour work day, 5 days per week, and the damage can accumulate quickly.

4. It can make the mind forgetful.
If you’re working on something and listening to music, it is not uncommon to experience memory gaps. You might forget where you are in the project or complete the entire task at hand without remembering what you did. When this happens, it is difficult to maintain quality control because there is no recollection of what just happened.

The pros and cons of music while working show that the right music at the right volume could be beneficial. The wrong music or playing music too loudly, however, could have the opposite effect. That’s why it is important to evaluate these key points before starting a playlist to get you through your day.

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