However, it's important to listen to the right types of music, as some can hinder your progress while others will help you move along at a faster pace. Some types of music just aren't designed for the office.
These tend to include songs with lyrics, complex musical sounds, or forms of music that you don't normally put on your playlist. Music can also distract if it's imposed upon you.
That said, there's music out there that has been proven to help people at work. In fact, some types are specifically designed with productivity in mind. Let's look at some tried-and-tested types of music and how they can help you create better work.
1. Classical Music
When we think of classical music, composers such as Bach, Vivaldi, and Handel come up in our thoughts. In a study, seven out of eight radiologists found that baroque music increased mood and concentration on their work. If you're looking for where to begin, try Vivaldi's quick-tempo Four Seasons or Bach's Brandenburg Concertos.
2. Nature Music
Listening to the sounds of nature can enhance cognitive function and concentration. Soothing sounds, such as flowing water, rainfall, and rustling leaves, work well, while jarring noises such as birdcalls and animal noises can be distracting. Some forms of nature music include instruments, such as piano or flute, which aid in creating a suitable atmosphere for work. I listen to babbling brooks and waves crashing when I need a moment to relax during stressful work periods.
3. Epic Music
Epic music can make you feel like you're doing something grandiose to change the world. Think trailer music for adventure and action movies.
It empowers and lifts you up. So, if you're feeling tired and uninspired during your workday, try listening to some "epic music" (yes, it's really called that) to give you that extra boost of motivation. I turn to epic music when it's late and I need an energy boost to keep working on a project.
4. Video Game Music
Music from video games is a great choice because the compositions are specifically designed to enhance your gaming experience. After all, it's pretty crucial you dodge that fire, or skillfully maneuver your way through hordes of enemies. For starters, try the Bastion soundtrack, or one of the SimCity soundtracks, to name a few.
5. Ambient Soundtracks
If you're feeling stressed out at work, give ambient music a try. As Brian Eno, creator of Music for Airports says, "Ambient music must be able to accommodate many levels of listening attention without enforcing one in particular; it must be as ignorable as it is interesting." Ambient music is effective for those difficult work moments, so that you can push through your work and stay sane in the process.
Other Types of Music
There's a number of other types of music you can listen to during work, such as meditation music, blues, or jazz, to name a few. If you just want to silence your chatty co-workers or the nearby printer, use "white noise" to cancel them out.
Experiment and see what works. Soft and mellow may help you to focus on your work, while a high energy piece can keep you motivated.
And of course, there are those times when silence is golden.