I like music. It fills the emptiness that is in my car while commuting to work. It creates company when I am in the kitchen cooking my family dinner. It provides a distraction while I am studying and attempting to concentrate on the concepts that I am learning.
There are so many types of music that match so many different moods and fulfills so many atmospheres. Songs that have lyrics that have you singing along and totally relating with. Music that makes you remember things of your past and then long for things in the future.
Being a fan of music across the board, I listen to diverse types of music. Although country music is probably my favorite, I have hundreds of songs downloaded on my phone that I listen to daily that include rap, rock, classical, country, rhythm and blues, indie rock, etc…
Country music gets a bad rap about their songs being about break ups and being cheated on and losing your dog and your girl. But, they get that reputation because there is a good portion of the songs that are exactly about those topics. My favorite station plays non-stop music for an hour during the afternoon, and it just so happens to be the hour that I drive home from work. So, I tend to play that radio station for their uninterrupted music. However, yesterday I hit my limit.
Hit my limit? Yes, the songs started to get to me. They made me think about questioning my relationship, making me wonder about the faithfulness of my partner, what I would do if we broke up and how heart broken I would be. Now mind you, I have no reason to think such things. I have a very solid foundation in my relationship. But after listening to songs about infidelity and ending relationships my mind was flooded with negative thoughts. The negative thoughts led to irrational fears and then my anxiety kicked in.
When I arrived home, I was in a sour mood. My mind filled with negativity it took everything in me not to take it out on anyone else as they did nothing wrong. However, after returning from grocery shopping, I greeted my spouse with verbal daggers. After I spewed my venom I shared that the country music I had been listening to messed with my head and I was having irrational thoughts.
I am finding that I am sensitive to the media that surrounds us. Most days I can handle all that I am surrounded with, but on other days I am not as strong, especially during times when I am fighting with symptoms of depression, and I am greatly affected by what I take in, whether it is visual or audio. On these days, I need to protect myself and shield myself from influences that will not benefit me. It is not the first time that I have had to take a break from country music, for the exact same reasons. But, this is called self-care. It is me taking care of myself. Knowing what I can handle and what I cannot handle.
Today I have my music on shuffle. If I song comes on that I do not feel comfortable with I have it in my power to hit the skip button, with no guilt associated with the decision. It is up to me to take care of me, and I plan to take care of me by filtering the music that I am allowing to flow into my ears.