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How I Engage In Late Night Therapy & Conversations Through Music

I consider music a staple. I listen to music so often that I find it hard to imagine how I would function without having it in my life. Yet, I had not realized the importance music has until thinking about my nightly routine. I especially listen to it at night because at this time, most of my family is sleeping, and so music keeps me company during a time when I’m alone. Music is truly therapeutic in the way it can amplify my emotions or become a soothing blanket of security.

phone with picture of taylor swift's red on the screen
Photo by Omid Armin from Unsplash

I’ve organized my playlists in Spotify based on the mood they give me. One playlist I have includes songs that I can blast when driving down the Pacific Coast Highway. Another playlist includes my throwback songs that give me a nostalgic euphoria. Although people may organize their playlists by genre, I like organizing mine by the moods they create for me since I can easily scroll through and choose one based on what I’m feeling. It seems strange to want to cry even more by listening to sad songs, but music is really therapeutic in this sense. It augments my emotions and makes me acknowledge how I’m feeling.

Listening to music at night is very comforting because it’s the time when most people go to sleep. Music comforts me by making me feel less alone. Music can start conversations with other people, but it can also help to start conversations with myself. I’ve used music as an outlet to acknowledge my thoughts. For instance, when I’m experiencing a problem, I like to lie in bed and listen to music just to console myself. I can connect to the song through its lyrics, rhythm and pitch. Although the problem isn’t officially solved, music makes me feel better and motivates me to do better. 

woman sleeping in bed
Photo by Gregory Pappas from Unsplash

Another way music makes me start late night conversations with myself is when I’m lying in bed and creating different scenarios in my head. Whether these scenarios be about my past regrets, present life choices or future goals, music mediates these conversations with myself. For some songs, I have associated them with memories that have impacted me. Therefore, listening to these songs that remind me of those memories contribute to the conversations I have with myself in thinking about the past. If I’m thinking about my present self, I like to listen to either sad songs or songs that genuinely make me happy to remind myself that what I’m feeling is valid. Furthermore, when thinking about the future, I listen to songs that are upbeat, because they make me feel more confident in myself. Somehow, this confidence also leaks into the thoughts I have about my future. Ultimately, this makes me feel less anxious for what’s to come. Music nurtures my feelings, and instead of changing the way I feel, it heals me in allowing myself to acknowledge my emotions from a different perspective.

Earbuds and Sheet Music
Photo by Pixabay from Pexels

Without music, my life would be considerably more bleak. With music, there is vibrancy and color because it speaks to my emotions. In having these conversations with myself when I listen to certain songs at night, music is definitely therapeutic. Although there is no physical person to listen to me, music provides me the company I need through lyrics and rhythm. Whether I’m feeling sad, nostalgic or joyful, music has comforted me through my ups and downs. Despite the fact that life continues to change, music is one of the constant factors in my life that I treasure.

Jamie Vu

UCLA '23

Jamie is a second year student at UCLA. She loves to listen to music and enjoys going to concerts and listening to artists live. During her free time, she likes to go out and explore.
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