“ Music is so important for people with Schizophrenia. In all the isolation caused by this illness, it gives a sense of belonging to be able to hear other people speak when you’re feeling so lonely and disconnected. I feel connected to the artists I have on my playlist, and each in their own way seems to speak to me and help come to terms with different things.
I am sure many feel the same way about music. It provides a great distraction and some of it really feels like it’s communicating to you on a level. You’re not treated differently by the music like you are by other people, and the messages you get from a lot of it helps keep in touch with what’s real in the world.
What you listen to can reflect how you feel. When I am hearing angry voices, I will play fast angry music and it becomes like a massive battle in my head, but the music doesn’t give up as long as my player still has battery. Other times when trying to concentrate, listening to something encouraging or mellow keeps me in check during that time, and I can focus.
I guess it’s important to have the stimulation for your brain. Nothing for the broken mind is worse than silence. If I am not distracted by something to work on or listen too, my mind wonders and I start to notice the fractures in my thinking and spend more time worrying about what’s going on around me. It’s like the volume on everything around me needs to be turned up so that I can bombard my mind with information to keep it processing on things other than myself.
I also like listening to the same things over and over again. You know what to expect, and you get clarity of thinking whilst listening to the song. Having this certainty is important to me, as I get very bad intrusive thoughts that twist and turn everything that goes through my head. That’s why I find music such a positive experience to have, as it’s predictable and I can rely on its consistency to promote some sort of structured thinking pattern in my mind.
Everywhere I go I have my noise cancelling headphones on. They cut out the noises of the environment, and stop my mind from wondering into places it shouldn’t. For me these tools work to maintain clarity of thinking, and without them this or that delusion driven by something happening externally is not allowed to happen. I guess this kind of hyper-focus allows me to keep things together better and keep my mind in check and maintain a balance.
I also feel I am better at controlling my emotions by being able to connect with music. You learn that one track from another you could be thrown into several different emotional states, and this has taught me about the importance to be able to recognise this in my own behaviour. I really suck when it comes to being able to use my emotions properly, so those tracks where people really get it right works to actually show how you’re supposed to feel about something if you learn about the context a song was written.
Without music I’d be in a much worse place. I wish I could contribute, but I am not really part of this world and have no real voice or support to do it. I’d be the single person playing all the instruments, as I am on my own. “ – Undisclosed Poster