There are two artists that I turn to when I *really* need to mellow in an extreme manner: Anael and Enya. Both of these two have incredibly penetrating, haunting voices that really smooth out any rough spots to any given day. I swear, they perfectly hit that “resonance frequency” that puts me in tune with their sound, and I calm down almost immediately. Or if I’m already semi-calm, I hit a zen-like state and couldn’t care less about the outside world.
I find this to be extremely helpful when I’m at work and the stress hits a particular level. New job, wanting to make a good impression, sometimes feeling like I fall short … their music in particular puts me at ease and actually helps me focus better and get more accomplished!
The odd thing is that I used to listen to stuff like Tool, System of a Down, or Metallica at work to “calm down.” And yah–I could work with that playing in the background, but lately … no. Before any of y’all jump to the inevitable “old man” conclusion, let me just say that I can hold serve with Serj and Maynard on any of their full-on screams. “Streamline” by SOAD, “Eulogy” from Tool … I can nail ’em both no problem. So no, it’s not a matter of “wimping out.” That music has its place, like when I’m in the car heading to or from work, at home doing housework, shower, etc. But for being at work and needing to stay mellow and on-task, I go for the mellow stuff. Enya and Anael are far and away the queens of relaxation.