Musical Intelligence and Relaxation Music

Musical intelligence may sound pompous and intimidating, but it really isn’t. It comes from a theory by the psychologist Howard Gardner that suggests there are distinct and different types of intelligence.

Gardner identified seven other forms of intelligence aside from the logical intelligence we normally associate with the term. One of those is musical intelligence – the appreciation and understanding of musical patterns.

People with high musical intelligence tend to think more in patterns and have a greater understanding of the underlying structures of music such as tone and rhythm.

While a higher level of musical intelligence may make playing music easier, and it may give you a different level of appreciation for music that you listen to, it does not significantly affect how relaxation music affects you. You can benefit from relaxation music regardless of your level of musical intelligence.

Relaxation music is based on a specific 40-60 beats per minute tempo that provides physiological input – it slows your heartbeat and breathing patterns to affect your metabolism. Musical intelligence should have no direct effect on this mechanism, but it may indirectly affect the type of relaxation music that you prefer.

The structure of the relaxation music – choice of instrumentation, tones, and patterns – may engage your mind at different levels. As you relax, do you tend to study the patterns of the music and become engrossed in them – or do you tune those patterns out and let them blend into the background?

With higher levels of musical intelligence, you may be more critical of some relaxation music and/or appreciative of others. Whether that insight helps or inhibits relaxation is up to your individual personality (engaging your other intelligences).

Regardless of your level of musical intelligence, the advice is the same – find the artists and songs that work best for you. Trial and error is the best method. Don’t let a high musical intelligence make you overthink your relaxation music choices.

In other words, don’t think…just relax.

Thank you for reading


Empowering People With Music


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