Shortly after I first started with HubSpot, I was welcomed using a fresh pair of orange, noise-canceling headphones. At the time, I had simply no clue that these headphones would carry me through several long work days and a few of the deepest, darkest amounts of writer’s block.
Over 3 years later, they are truly the particular gift that keeps upon giving.
You see, for me, listening to music while working could be the secret to my productivity. All it takes is the right Beyoncé track, and I go from idle to uber productive. (Seriously, it works like a charm. )
The trouble is, finding the perfect playlist isn’t always simple. With endless streaming songs possibilities at my fingertips, it can be hard to nail down just the right tunes to get the tires turning. So , I did what we should do best around right here — a little research.
As it turns out, there is a ton of studies that will explore the influence of specific types of music because they relate to your productivity levels.
To help you find just the right blend, we’ve sourced and curated seven Spotify playlists built with specific studies in mind. Whether or not you’re into Mozart or Chance The Rapper, we’re confident that there’s something with this list that will do the trick.
Note: Some of the playlists contain tracks with explicit language that might not be suitable for the office.
7 Science-Backed Office Music Playlists for Productivity
one Classical Music
One of the most often cited studies related to songs and productivity is the “Mozart Effect, ” which concluded that listening to Mozart for even a brief period each day may boost “abstract reasoning ability. ”
The study — directed by researchers Gordon Shaw, Frances Rauscher, and Katherine Ky — employed thirty six Cal-Irvine students who were separated into three groups. The first pool listen to a Mozart selection, while group two listened to a relaxation tape, and group three endured a couple of minutes of silence.
After the listening activity, all 36 college students were issued the same test, in which the Mozart group averaged an eight-to-nine point embrace their IQs, compared to the remaining groups.
Since then, the “Mozart Effect” has been hotly competitive, but many researchers have gone on to explore the psychological benefits of learning and hearing classical music. One latest study, for example , found that will elementary-school-aged children who participated in music composition education outperformed students in a manage group on reading comprehension.
Think classical music might work for you? Check out this classical-influenced playlist to find out for yourself:
second . Video Game Soundtracks
“Choosing the correct video game soundtrack to work to is all about understanding what type of songs motivates vs . distracts you when you need to concentrate, inch says HubSpot’s VP of Acquisition (and former video gaming marketing consultant) Emmy Jonassen.
“For example, if you’re the type who gets amped and focused listening to high-energy music, rhythm game soundtracks, such as those from Thumper or even Klang, could work well. On the other hand, if you need calm to focus, the serene soundtracks from exploration games, like ABZÛ and Journey, may do the trick. With thousands of games releasing every year, including many impartial titles, there is a soundtrack to fit everyone’s ear, ” the girl went on to explain.
Think about it: Playing a video game requires a great deal of focus. To make it to the next level, players commonly have to avoid traps, dodge obstacles, and discover secret tools that will help them progress to the next level. As a result, the music selection for video games is often very strategic, for the reason that modern soundtracks tend to reflect epic, inspiring cinematic ratings rather than just basic sound clips.
And while studies have revealed combined results, there is evidence to back up that gamers can encounter improved performance by playing a game with the volume on.
For example , when psychology teacher Siu-Lan Tan and her colleagues John Baxa and Matt Spackman specifically produced in on the game “Twilight Princess (Legend of Zelda), ” they found that will participants who played with each music and sound effects away performed worse than those that played with it on.
Consider it on for size? Check out the playlist below:
3 or more. Nature Sounds
According to psychophysical data and sound-field evaluation published in The Journal of the Accoustic Society of America , listening to “natural” sounds can enhance cognitive functioning, optimize your ability to concentrate, and increase your level of satisfaction.
Believe: Waves crashing, birds chirping, streams trickling, and the like.
That could explain why more consumer-facing brands — from Google Home to the newer Noisli — are introducing this kind of ambient sound features to assist listeners relax or concentrate. It might also be behind Spotify’s multiple nature-themed playlists, such as this soothing one:
4. Power up Songs
After observing that many athletes arrive at the stadium wearing headphones, Kellogg College of Management professor Derek Rucker and three of his colleagues — Loran Nordgren, Li Huang, and Adam Galinsky — set out to answer the question: Does hearing the right kind of music make us feel more efficient or in control?
So , in 2014, the group of researchers set up a study to gauge how music might impact motivation and subsequent behaviour. First, they played several songs for participants within a lab, and asked them — on a scale of one to seven — just how powerful, dominant, and identified they felt after hearing each song. There were 3 “high power” winners: Queen’s “We Will Rock You, ” 2 Unlimited’s “Get Ready for This, ” plus 50 Cent’s “In Da Club. ”
Then, in order to gauge how the music might influence their behavior, they asked participants to listen to the music and then determine whether or not that they had like to go first or even second in a debate. Since it turned out, those who listened to the high-power playlist volunteered to look first almost twice as often as those who listened to a much less powerful playlist.
The lesson? “Just as professional sportsmen might put on empowering songs before they take the field to obtain them in a powerful state of mind, inch Rucker explained, “you may try [this] in certain situations where you desire to be empowered. ”
Next time you’re looking to feel empowered before a big presentation, interview, or salary review, check out this roundup:
Want more? Have a look at my colleague Amanda Zantal-Wiener’s picks here.
5. Instrumental Songs
In 2015, Middle Tennessee State University scientists Carol A. Smith plus Larry W. Morris learned that students who listened to “sedative” music during a test obtained higher than those who listened to lyrical music. (That somewhat clashes their initial findings 39 years earlier, which demonstrated that while music didn’t disclose an impact on test scores, those who listened to “stimulative music” showed a significant increase in get worried and highly emotional reactions. )
That isn’t to say it’s far entirely impossible to combination things off your list while listening to songs with words and phrases — I actually prefer musical music, but my friend, Amanda Zantal-Wiener, has joked about hip hop verses unintentionally slipping into her first drafts when she listens to songs with terms. If you’re like she is and locate that lyrics are too distracting, you may want to experiment with some instrumental options.
For those times, check out these lyric-less tunes — we promise they won’t place you to sleep:
6. “Feel Good” Songs
Buried in deadlines? Trying to unearth your self from an email mountain over time off? Whatever’s bugging a person, sometimes, the best remedy for efficiency loss is a solid dose of “feel good” songs — you know, the kind that make you spontaneously use a pen as a pantomimed microphone.
Yet scientifically speaking, music may stimulate the same part of the human brain as delicious food and various other physical pleasures. Researchers in McGill University, for example , learned that when participants received the opiod-production-blocking drug naltrexone, these people didn’t respond as favorably to their favorite tunes because they might normally.
The judgement? Our brains are trained to naturally produce these chemical substances when we hear our favored playlist.
And while “feel good” songs vary from person to person, a search for Spotify playlists with those very keywords produces dozens of results. That said, here is one of our favorites:
Still cannot get enough? Here are a few a lot more suggestions from my colleague Amanda.
7. White Sound
According to a study led by Yamaguchi College, “When carrying out intellectual actions involving memory or arithmetic tasks, it is a common experience for noise to result in an increased psychological impression associated with ‘annoyance, ‘ leading to the decline in performance. ”
Whether you’re remote working with roommates or working in an office space with loud colleagues, it can be tricky to focus with conversations happening around you. Neutral, non-verbal background sounds like white noise, which is totally different from nature sounds, can help stop these distractions — things such as the din of a restaurant or shopping mall, an electric fan, or even laundry machines.
And in case you’re wondering — yes. Like all of the above, there is definitely a playlist for that:
So go on — focus, get pumped, feel good, and rock out.
What are your favorite songs for getting work done? Let us know within the comments.
Editor’s Note: This post was originally published in March 2015 and has been updated with regard to accuracy and comprehensiveness.