Whether working from home or in the office, it is not unusual to feel the need to isolate ourselves from external sounds, to be able to better concentrate or work more efficiently.
All of us have their own preferred music and songs, but when it comes to focusing on work (or study), the best is sometimes not to play music and songs that you love because your brain may be tempted to partially concentrate on the song, the lyrics, etc... The red flag is: if you catch yourself singing along or bobbing your your head "in sync" with the tune, then it might mean that you are not fully focused on your work.
Rest assured that they are types of music which not only will let you concentrate on your work, but also which have the capacity to boost your concentration, productivity and efficiency.
#1 Alpha Waves
Webster dictionary defines Alpha Waves as "an electrical rhythm of the brain with a frequency of approximately 8 to 13 cycles per second that is often associated with a state of wakeful relaxation".
They are considered as one of the most powerful ways to concentrate and maintain a level of focus throughout long periods of time.
The overwhelming advantage of Alpha waves is that they do not include any recognisable patterns, rythms or melodies, which your attention can latch on to. Therefore, there is no risk for you to sing along or to stop working to enjoy a particular part of a melody. Alpha waves provide a buffer from external noise, they engage the best part of your mind and they put you in a highly focused state of mind.
Talented creators have produced music using these alpha waves and it is really useful to get "in the zone" and stay there. It's excellent for tasks requiring all your brain capacity, for example for tasks requiring creativity.
On Youtube, you can find a wealth of hour-long alpha waves videos (useful, as you don't have to change the music frequently), for example:
# 2 Nature sounds
This one may not be for everyone, as these may help some and irritate others.
But the sounds of nature, and songs including sounds of nature, can boost concentration as well as one's mood. It is especially useful during the winter months, or anytime there is a lack of natural light in your workspace.
# 3 Instrumental music
Instrumental music is a good option to help concentrate because songs do not contain lyrics that your mind could focus on, therefore there is no risk of "singing along". There are many genres of instrumental music: for example jazz, classical, fusion, electronica, and EDM. It's just a matter of finding what suits you best.
#4 Ambient Music
Ambiant music is a style of gentle, largely electronic instrumental music with no persistent beat, which emphasises tone and atmosphere over traditional musical structure or rhythm.
The variety of ambient music is wide, and again Youtube has a wealth of options for all tastes. You can try for example Moby's album (Long Ambients 1 & 2), which is available on Youtube and which can be downloaded for free on Mobi's website.
#5 Classical Music
Classical music is a good concentration music because it does not have any lyrics, however some pieces may be a little bit too exciting to really allow full concentration. Well selected, it is a good option and again, the variety is so wide that there is really a fit for everyone.
One option is Baroque classical music. Scientific studies have found that Baroque music promotes concentration and learning because its 60 beats rhythm favours a state of calmness which improves attention.
We hope the above helps! Let us know in the comments below which type is your favourite and what kind of music you listen to when working!
Other blog articles that might interest you:
How to connect several monitors to your computer
The ergonomics of working from home
Document Control Checklists