Music and lyrics have a special place in all our hearts, be it our parents' generation grooving to Michael Jackson to the kids of today dancing along to K-pop. It has been noted time and time again that when we're feeling down, there's nothing like a good song to lift our spirits. From parents singing 'Twinkle Twinkle Little Star' to calm their crying babies to singing 'Good For You' by Olivia Rodrigo to get over an ex, there is nothing that music isn't a remedy for.
How Songs Help You Deal with Anxiety
Music is an integral part of our lives, in the happy, wholesome, nothing-can-bring-me-down moments, especially in the sad, upsetting, my-life-will-never-get-better ones. It has been proven scientifically that music significantly helps people manage their anxiety. Studies show that music lowers the amount of stress-causing hormones and reduces the effects of anxiety on our bodies. We all have those lyrics that hit deep in our soul, the songs we listen to when we just need to hit pause on life and take a breather. Art and artists understand us in a way that is sometimes even better than how we know ourselves.
How Good Lyrics Can Affect Your Mood
Human beings are social animals, and as such, we have an innate need for communication. Lyrics are one of the most significant communication devices in the language of music. When we listen to a happy, feel-good song, we can't help but feel happy as well. When listening to a sad song, we tend to empathize and feel the grief as well. It's human nature to look for people experiencing the same things as us, for solidarity, comfort, and knowledge that someone out there understands what it feels like.
In recent times, as conversations surrounding mental well-being are happening more openly and becoming a normalized part of the human experience, artists are using their voice to share their own experiences.
On that note, here's a list of 10 songs with lyrics for the times when you just need to feel good about life:
Shake It Off - Taylor Swift
The message that Swift puts forth in this catchy song is timeless. "That's what people say … I'm just going to shake it off" it doesn't matter what people say because people will always have something to say; we just need to shake it off.
Stronger (What Doesn't Kill You) - Kelly Clarkson
Clarkson's iconic lyric "What doesn't kill you makes you stronger" is something we need to be reminded of in hard times. Life is a learning curve, and there will always be ups and downs. In hard times we all just need to have a reminder of the fact that we live and we learn.
What A Wonderful World - Louis Armstrong
A short and sweet song that stands as a reminder that when things are tough, there is still so much beauty and wonder in our world. The lyrics to this wholesome song remind us of the fact that we are blessed to be on this planet surrounded by so many people and so much love.
22 - Taylor Swift
Swift's lyrics speak to every 20-something who comes into their own as an adult. Navigating adulthood as Swift puts it, is a "miserable and magical" experience. We're "happy, free, confused and lonely", and that's okay.
Dancing Queen - ABBA
A timeless classic by the Swedish pop group, Dancing Queen, is a reminder to everyone on the cusp of adulthood that they deserve to have the time of their lives. The song places heavy emphasis on the fact that it's okay to just go out and live, dance a little, and always be yourself.
Good As Hell - Lizzo
Lizzo is an icon of self-love, and her song Good As Hell is a testament to that. When situations or people test us, we just have to flip our hair and remind ourselves that we're Good As Hell. Lizzo's lyrics here are an instant pick-me-up.
Don't Stop Me Now - Queen
It is the quintessential feel-good song, so much so that the lyrics state multiple times that they're "havin' a good time". It is about being unapologetic about your happiness. Sometimes you have to "La-da-da-da-dah" your way through life and go about your day as supersonic men and women.
Here Comes The Sun - The Beatles
A melodic and repetitive song that reminds the listener that even after long, cold winters, the sun will always be there. No matter how long the winter lasts, the sun will rise and melt the ice, and there will be hope.
Solar Power - Lorde
In the title track to her latest studio album, Lorde uses the winter as a metaphor for times in her life when she's anxious and unable to meet people, but as 'spring' comes, she has a spring in her step. The lyrics show the listener that it's okay to set boundaries and take life at your own pace.
Happy - Pharrell Williams
No feel-good playlist is complete without this song. This upbeat song has equally positive lyrics. Happiness is an emotion experienced differently by different people, and the lyrics for this song prove precisely that.
If you liked our little curation of feel-good songs, send it to the people in your life who need a reminder that even when things are bad, life can still be good.
You can also share your favourite songs for when you think those tracks might just act as a little pick-me-up for someone by joining our community!
How Can Now&Me help?
Now&Me provides a safe and supportive platform to connect with experienced mental health and self care professionals who can offer you guidance and support.
Our peer community is welcoming, non-judgmental, and inclusive, creating a warm and supportive environment to share your thoughts and feelings.
Not necessarily. While understanding the lyrics can deepen the emotional connection to a song, the overall melody, rhythm, and energy of the music can still evoke positive feelings even if the lyrics are not fully comprehended. Sometimes, the catchy tune or the overall vibe of the song is enough to uplift one's mood and bring about a sense of joy or optimism.
Yes, numerous studies have shown that listening to music with positive and uplifting lyrics can enhance mood, reduce anxiety, and improve overall well-being. Music has been found to stimulate the release of dopamine, a neurotransmitter associated with pleasure, which contributes to its mood-boosting effects.