Do you have a song?

You know – the one that sticks in your head, brings a smile to your face, and makes you sing or dance along to it.

There’s the song you associate with your first love, with summer, with being a kid, with sadness, a time of carefreeness, a certain person, and almost every major moment in your life.

Two of my favorites are:

1. Katy Perry’s ‘Roar’
2. Celine Dion’s ‘My Heart Will Go On’

In some ways, we react to certain songs the way the dogs in Pavlov’s experiments did to a bell ringing.

If there’s a song with a strong memory associated with a piece of music, our mood and mental state is often transformed from its current state to the ones we held when we first heard it.

We’ve all had the experience of tune-related “time travel.”

But have you ever purposely used that experience to your benefit? If you’re feeling sad, do you ever load your favorite tune and let it carry you away to a relaxed and happy place?

It won’t take away the event that’s causing your current sadness, but it can give you a break from it and possibly a different perspective. Your stress level can fall, allowing better blood flow, less muscle tension, and even reduced fatigue.

You can’t always get away to walk in nature, talk with a trusted friend or family member, or completely disconnect, but it’s simple to mentally tune-in to your favorite song. No equipment is required, and only a tiny amount of effort is needed.

So, next time you’re feeling out of sorts, play that song.