The Neuroscience of Singing

Sing alone – transform your brain; sing together – amplify everything

In the shower, in the car – or boldly, in public?

Singing is transformative for our brains. Most of us do it in the shower, many in the car. Some go for it walking down the street  – and how many smiles does that induce? Positively transforming the brains of others around us, as their mirror neurons fire and they join our happiness. What a gift to be able to share!

Singing = less cortisol = better life

Studies have shown that singers have lower levels of cortisol, leading to lower levels of stress – and all the positive benefits this brings. According to Time, studies indicate that ‘singing relieves anxiety, and contributes to our quality of life’.

Group singing: increase oxytocin; get into the group flow

Researchers have found that when we sing together, in a group, levels of oxytocin in the brain increase. At the same time, adrenocorticotropic hormone (ACTH) mediates the engagement and arousal effects of music. This neurochemical mix affects our feelings of connection and perception of social flow. Trust, co-operation, and social skills are all increased, along with inclusion, a sense of ‘belonging’.

The rise of the choir: our brains know we need it!

So maybe this explains the rise in recent years of group choirs. In 2013, there were 25,000 choirs in the UK. One group found their local memberships doubling from 8,000 to 16,000 in one year. Singing with a group energises us, it’s exhilirating to be part of that group flow experience. At the same time, it also soothes and calms a part of us that requires social acceptance.

Using neurochemicals to increase performance and wellbeing

Harnessing neurochemistry is an incredibly successful method of increasing performance and wellbeing. We have developed a proven coaching technique, NeuChem Coaching®, which does just this. Neuroscience and psychology together provide an easy and fun way to create lasting change, which sticks – like singing together! What do you think? Do you sing alone, or share your talents? Have you become part of a choir? How do you feel after a singing session?

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