No matter how fun streaming can be, there is always the creeping anxiety that can rear up its ugly head even while you are live. Sometimes, this anxiety and chronic stress even persist even while you aren’t streaming. So, a question has to be asked: how do you deal with anxiety on and off cam? The answer might surprise you: music.
Music has long been believed and is now studied in academia on how it could lessen anxiety. But how does it work, really? And more importantly, how should you use it before, during, and after streaming to deal with negative feelings and fears?
In this post, we will talk about that and more, so keep reading.
How Does Listening to Music Help Stress Reduction?
Being a content creator isn’t as easy as people make it out to be. Streamers, for instance, have to play games and broadcast themselves for hours on end. That and the fact that strangers from all over the world whom you feel could judge you at any moment are enough triggers to cause massive anxiety.
Worse, this anxiety and stress could creep up into your everyday life in the form of mental health issues and physical ailments like chronic pain.
While medication and therapy should be the main method of battling these types of problems, there are also other effective strategies you can do, like meditation, spending time with your loved ones, and going out into the sun regularly.
But then, what if you feel anxious during the stream? So anxious that you’re afraid you might mess up the broadcast? How do you deal with it quickly and effectively?
Fortunately, there’s one science-backed and effective way to ease anxiety, though: music.
Music Therapy and Science
For a long time, music has been believed to bring many benefits to a person’s mental, physical, and psychological well-being. Currently, it has also become the subject of many studies about whether or not it could impact health and cognition.
Many types of research showed positive effects of music, namely, its therapeutic and calming effects.
Those examples show how relaxing music could help calm the mind and happy tunes could motivate individuals to work.
Music listening also has many benefits for streamers and other types of content creators. Here’s how it could help you battle anxiety:
Music Can Lower Cortisol Levels and Release Feel-Good Chemicals
If you feel stressed when streaming, your body will release hormones like cortisol which triggers a fight or flight response. As you might have known, this isn’t good because it will make you feel tense and anxious. Music can help decrease cortisol levels and, at the same time, release feel-good chemicals like dopamine and endorphins.
Music Helps Lower Blood Pressure
Music can also help lower blood pressure and normalize heart rate, which in turn can help you feel calmer and more relaxed.
Music Helps Distract Us From Overthinking
Music has a distracting ability that helps us filter out thoughts that may be running wildly through our minds.
If negative thoughts and fears are constantly bombarding you, music can help ease the tension you feel. It serves as a pleasant distraction if you easily get distracted by numbers and words flying through your chat.
Music Can Help Give A Confidence Boost During Streaming
For new streamers, broadcasting yourself can quickly feel overwhelming, especially if you aren’t used to it. If you aren’t still comfortable speaking or showing yourself on camera, music could give you a confidence boost.
Music Can Boost Creativity, Memory, and Concentration
Stress and anxiety can make us lose our focus – and when we can’t concentrate, we probably won’t be able to do well, whether on the game or interacting with fans.
Music can boost memory and concentration as well. With a more relaxed and focused mind, creativity can flow more freely, and information retention abilities can get better–both of which could help your gameplay.
Calming Effects To Listening to Music on Stream
Classical music or meditative music often comes to mind when you think of relaxing music. However, when you are streaming, that might not be ideal, and it’s obvious why. Those songs make you sleep. And because you are streaming, you probably need something more upbeat. Perhaps something with a faster tempo. But then, don’t those songs get you more tense and flustered instead?
However, it’s only sometimes the case. Some studies have shown that listening to familiar music you like could also help you relax.
How Music Affects You
It makes sense if you think about it. Playing jazz or classical music on your MP3 might help you relax. However, if you don’t like either of them, you will probably get annoyed. On the other hand, if techno music is more to your liking, you would feel more at ease and might even drum to the beat of the song.
Music preference plays a large part in helping you ease content creator anxiety. Music tempo could also have some effects.
A fast tempo and upbeat music could help you become more alert and focused. It could also bring some enthusiasm and motivation, especially if you are feeling sleepy. Music in this category usually has 89 BPM and above.
Songs with a moderate to slow tempo can induce calm and invoke a feeling of tranquility, making you feel more relaxed. Music in this category usually hangs around more or less 80 BPM.
If you are looking for music to play on your stream, find tracks that don’t have lyrics. Lyrics can be distracting, so instrumental or EDM songs are your best bet. It doesn’t have to be a piece of neutral music, but if that is what you like, go for it. Some of the best genres and subgenres you could use are electro, techno, synth-pop, chill, and lofi.
What Music Should You Listen to On Stream?
The best music you should listen to on your stream largely depends on your preferences. If you adore lofi, then play it while you stream. However, if you prefer rock or metal, go for it. No one should actually tell you which genre to play.
That being said, you might be itching to open your Spotify, YouTube, or Apple Music, play some of your favorite tunes to chill out, but this would be a mistake. Remember, you are streaming. And I know you know where this is going: DMCA stuff.
Unfortunately, you can’t just play any song you wish. DMCA laws require that you have contractual permission to play copyrighted music.
There is a way around it, though: DMCA-safe tracks. But then, finding royalty-free songs can be time-consuming, so your best bet is to find a website that allows you to play any genre of music quickly.
Enter Epidemic Sound.
So far, it is the most accessible platform to get Twitch and YouTube safe tracks. Sign up for an account, and you can play thousands of songs immediately. Best of all, they have a free trial available for 30 days.
What I like most about Epidemic Sound is how vast its library is. There are many genres available, so if I get tired of listening to one and want to try another, I can do that right away.
Navigating the platform is very easy, too. You could add songs to a playlist and put notes on them. It’s very convenient.
Seriously, though. Of all the platforms I’ve tried, Epidemic Sound helped me find the relaxing tunes I need to use on my streams. It’s easy to use and has the DMCA-safe tracks I need. All of their songs and sound effects are high-quality, too, and they are perfect not only for streaming background music but for alerts and VODs as well.
It’s normal to feel anxiety during a live stream, but try not to let it ruin your momentum. Music therapists and even ordinary folks have used music intervention because of its ability to calm people down.
Playing your favorite recorded music can help you relax. However, because you can’t just play any tracks from Spotify or YouTube, you must use music resource platforms that provide DMCA-safe songs like Epidemic Sound.
Hopefully, this post helped you how to deal with content creator anxiety through music. If you know other creatives who feel and experience the same, share it with them. Anxiety shouldn’t stop you from doing what you love.