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Sunday, November 23, 2014

Let it Go: Unlocking Your Frozen Emotions with Music

William R Brooksher, Photographer

 'If you had to choose just one song to sustain you with happy memories for an eternity, what would that song be?'
Music and Happy Memories

This morning I woke up thinking about what music I would put on my list of lifetime favorites when I came across a TED discussion group with the question, 'If you had to choose just one song to sustain you with happy memories for an eternity, what would that song be?'

Having just watched an incredibly moving documentary on Netflix the night before--'Alive Inside: A Story of Music and Memory'--in which social worker Dan Cohen demonstrates the extraordinary and amazingly immediate effects of music in unlocking memory and emotions in patients with Alzheimer's, this was the very question on my mind. 

The documentary had me contemplating what music I would want on my playlist if by chance in the future I was locked for all eternity in a soul-killing Alzheimer's hell. After witnessing how music awakened the soul within those stuck without memories I knew I would want my children to help me unlock my emotions and memory through my music should this be my fate.

Frozen Heart--artist unknown

Unlocking Frozen Emotions

But as I began to listen to some of my favorite music this morning, I immediately felt something shake free in myself. Having recently experienced the loss of loved ones, I have been locked up and shut away within myself. I thought I was really thawing out but I discovered I had a way to go as the music moved me.

Sometimes life challenges and transitions lead us to numb our emotions and freeze our hearts. As we strive to be strong and survive the more difficult changes we often shut ourselves off from others and separate from our emotions. When we're ready to let go and unlock our frozen emotions we need a way to reconnect to others. Music offers us an excellent bridge back to the core of our fully functioning selves.

I realized if music has the ability to awaken memories and exuberant emotions in people with Alzheimer's, it can help us through the other times when we close off against life.  

'Why wait to apply the musical salve when we can apply it to heal our frozen hearts and numbed emotions today?'
Hearts Overflowing by Susan J Meyerott

What Music Is on Your Playlist?

I took advantage of the favorite music choices provided by others in the TED discussion group to start me on my own list--and began adding from there. I offer the start of my list to you to get you started.  I would love to hear what YOUR favorites are too. 

'What music would awaken your warm memories and exuberant emotions?'

Sunshine on my Shoulders
Annie's Song
Mr Tambourine Man
Singing in the Rain
This Land is Your Land
Fly Me to the Moon
Blowin' in the Wind
Louis Armstrong's It's a Wonderful World
Time of your Life
Amazing Grace
Jim Croce's Time in a Bottle
The Lion Sleeps Tonight
Somewhere over the Rainbow
You Raise me Up
Stand by Me
Wednesday Morning, 3 am
Brazillian Music
Brazil 66--Night and Day
The Power of One Soundtrack 
Canon in D by Pachabel
Handel's Hallelujah Chorus 

I never tire of hearing Susan Boyle in her debut performance. What an inspiration!
I Dreamed a Dream sung by Susan Boyle 

This one was offered up by someone in the group. Do yourself a favorite and listen to is incredible! 
"O Magnum Mysterium" by Morton Lauridsen
King's College Choir (Oxford)  Dec. 24th, 2009 choral performance: 

Thank you to Phil MacNeill, Director at PRMAC Consulting and Research for posting the question 'If you had to choose just one song to sustain you with happy memories for an eternity, what would that song be?' on the TED LinkedIn discussion group.

Check out  Alive Inside: A Story of Music and Memory on Netflix or go to link:

Heart Art by Susan J Meyerott

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For more than 30 years, Susan Meyerott has been helping people lighten up and step over invisible barriers to change one step at a time. She speaks to your heart, puts you at ease, and makes changing easier than ever before.

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ArtL said...

"Have You Ever Really Loved a Woman" performed by Naudo Rodrigues

“Au fond du temple saint“ from George Bizet's The Pearl Fishers performed by Igor Morozov & Janez Lotric

Susan J Meyerott, M.S. said...

Thanks, Art! Now what else? Sue

Jean | Delightful Repast said...

Susan, that's a tough question! Of course I have lots of classical, jazz and blues favorites, but even limiting it to just popular music I don't know where to start.

Some of your selections I really like and that made me think of others: Singing in the Rain (On the Street Where You Live), Blowing in the Wind (several Judy Collins songs and California Dreaming), Stand By Me (lots of music from the 1960's, including Motown and Beatles, Miss You by Rolling Stones).