We are all much more aware of protecting our mental health, and aiding our mental wellbeing, especially in these times of COVID, looking after our mental health has never been so important.
There are many things we can do that we know help keep our mental well being more healthy, such as eating healthily, drinking plenty of water, exercising and mediation.
But, did you know that learning the piano is also beneficial for your mental health? Well, it is, and many studies have shown that this is so.
Let’s have a look at why.
Helps Relieve Anxiety
Many people suffer with some form of anxiety, in this fast paced, stressful world. Learning and playing the piano has been shown to do wonders to help relieve the symptoms of anxiety.
When you are anxious, you often struggle to focus due to the overwhelming amount of thoughts running through your head at any one time.
To learn and to play the piano takes a great deal of concentration and focus, so practicing almost forces you to focus on only one thing, and this can be just what your brain needs to have a break from thinking about everything and anything.
Learning and playing the piano will also help to improve your levels of concentration, which will go on to help you in your life outside of piano playing, like at work for example.
Playing the piano has also been shown to lower blood pressure and heart rates, which in turn can help with reducing feelings of stress, and lead to you generally feeling much better in yourself.
Depending on the piece you are playing on your piano, it can also help you release some pent up anger from whatever has stressed you that day. If you are playing a more impressive, loud piece of music, it requires almost forceful playing and this can help with that stress level, as well as using up some energy to help you relax.
Helps Improve Confidence And Self Esteem
Having low confidence and low self esteem are more very common problems that many people suffer with.
There can be many reasons for this, although there seems to be a correlation between the rise of social media and people feeling less satisfied with themselves and their lives.
Low self esteem can then lead on to further problems like depression and anxiety, so finding a way to improve both confidence and self esteem can be extremely beneficial.
Playing the piano can really help in both of these areas. Learning the piano and subsequently learning how to play different pieces of music will give you a huge sense of achievement.
Learning to play the piano takes a lot of dedication and practice, as well as time management and organisational skills. So, when this all comes together and you finally manage the scale you’ve been struggling with, or you can seamlessly play the piece of music you’ve been wanting to play for some time, the sense of achievement you feel will be huge.
This will then make you feel great about yourself, and that lift in self esteem will carry into other areas of your life.
Playing any instrument, in this case a piano, will involve some playing in front of an audience. Whether that audience is small and just consists of your family and friends, or even just in front of your tutor, or whether your audience is larger in the form of a concert or in front of your peers at places like LVL Music Academy over here: https://www.learnviolinlessons.net/piano-lessons/, there will be some form of playing to an audience.
This can be quite scary, and building up to it will be slightly nerve wracking, however doing this and completing a show in front of an audience of any size will give your confidence it needs.
Helps Improve Social Connections
Humans are naturally social beings, and being isolated leads to feelings of being lonely, which we know is extremely detrimental to our mental wellbeing.
Music is very bonding, and whether you are going into learning an instrument as a child or an adult, you are bound to widen your social circle.
Learning or playing an instrument is a real conversation starter, and gives you something to fall back on if you find social interactions a little tricky.
There are often clubs or events for those that enjoy playing instruments, and you will meet others who share the same passions as you, and make more friends and acquaintances, which is very good for our mental health.
Helps With Aging Brain Health
Learning a musical instrument creates new connections in the brain, many scientific studies have shown that.
It is thought that people who have learnt an instrument before the onset of Alzheimer’s disease, or dementia, have a lower risk of developing either of these.
It seems that having the knowledge of playing an instrument slows down the progression of these two diseases also.
Patients who are suffering with dementia who are playing music also seem to be able to access memories they thought were lost.
Learning an instrument is a skill unlike any other, and no matter what age you start to learn, you will keep your brain sharp and create new neural connections which will help to keep your brain younger for longer.
It’s Just A Nice Thing To Do!
Regardless of all the benefits of learning the piano, and there are physical benefits too, playing an instrument is just simply a nice thing to do.
When you are playing the piano, it is something that you can do for yourself. There’s no pressure, it’s something you are doing for yourself, with no expectations from anyone else.
It gives you some time away from all the serious responsibilities of life like working, paying bills and cleaning the house, it’s a form of self care.
We all need hobbies, and there are so many mental and physical benefits to learning the piano, and it’s something you can do at any age.