Effortless Ways to Improve Your Day With Sound

One Sound Health reader recently wrote in with a very good question. I wanted to address it in today’s issue in case anyone else has a similar dilemma.

Hey Jim,

I love reading about all of the benefits of sound. I really want to improve my health and incorporate these benefits into my life, but I’ve been having trouble sticking to a solid routine.

By the time I’m done with work and taking care of my kids, I’m out of energy and ready for bed.

Any advice? – C.P.

I can definitely relate. There are some days I wonder, “Where did the time go?”

One trick I’ve discovered over the years is a technique I like to call “double-dipping.” It’s simple.

“Double-dipping” helps you maximize the use of your time by adding sound exercises to things you’re already doing.

For example, you can stimulate your vagus nerve—through humming, chanting, or singing—while:

  • Commuting
  • Completing your AM/PM routine
  • Cooking
  • Doing chores or yardwork
  • Listening to your favorite music
  • Taking a walk
  • Showering

These vagal exercises are some of the quickest and easiest ways to get mood-boosting neurochemicals (like dopamine and oxytocin) flowing, improve concentration, and increase your energy levels.

Your endless, all-natural energy supply

Personally, I prefer to do my afternoon vagal exercises while listening to music.

It gives both my mood and my energy levels the mid-day pick-me-up I need.

So before you grab that second or third cup of coffee, you might just want to turn up the tunes.

But don’t just take it from me. Here’s what the science has to say about the energizing powers of music:

In 2007, a group of researchers from the University of Toronto found that listening to up-tempo music boosts mental processing speed and improves cognitive performance.

And a 2018 study from the American College of Cardiology discovered that up-tempo music provides motivation while you exercise (yes, please!) and helps you increase the length of your workout—providing you with even more energy for your day.

If you’re in the market for some fresh up-tempo music, I put together a special energy-boosting playlist. Listen for free by clicking here.

Use rhythmic breathing to make better decisions

Another simple way to improve your day—without disrupting your routine—is to change up your breathing rhythm. Obviously, breathing is something you do already—so why not make it work to your advantage?

Especially since one simple breathing technique can also improve your decision-making skills.

Every day you’re faced with a multitude of choices. And one sure-fire way to make poor decisions is to make them when you’re stressed and have a lot on your mind.

To clear a busy mind, you must first activate your parasympathetic nervous system—the system that brings your body into a state of calm and relaxation.

And you can easily do this with rhythmic breath control.

One specific technique I like to use is called square breathing. I created a guided walk-through for you. Click here to get started. https://bit.ly/square-breathing-exercise

According to a 2019 study published in the International Journal of Psychophysiology, having a calm, rational mind can improve your decision-making ability by up to 50 percent!

A better day takes almost no effort

The bottom line today is that sound and rhythm can be reliable companions for people looking to improve their life, without sacrificing their typical routine.

Now that you’ve seen just how easy it can be to work these exercises into your daily life, it’s time to give it a try! Let me know how it goes! Just drop me a line via the Sound Health Facebook page or shoot me an email at feedback@donovanhealth.com.

P.S. – For even more ways to increase your energy, sharpen your focus, or clear your mind, you might be interested in my Whole Body Sound Healing System. There are over 30 video tutorials, designed to improve your overall health. (Each lesson is no longer than 10 minutes!) Click here to learn more or give it a try today.


American College of Cardiology. (2018). Music boosts exercise time during cardiac stress testing. ScienceDaily. Retrieved by: sciencedaily.com/releases/2018/03/180301094811.htm

De Couck, M. et al. (2019). How breathing can help you make better deciisons: Two studies on the effects of breathing patterns on heart rate variability and decision-making in business cases. International Journal of Psychophysiology. 139 pp. 1 – 9. Retrieved from:  sciencedirect.com/science/article/abs/pii/S0167876018303258

Schellenberg, E., Nakata, T., Hunter, P., and Tamoto, S. (2007). Exposure to music and cognitive performance: tests of children and adults. Psychology of Music. 35(1): pp. 5-19. Retrieved from: utm.utoronto.ca/~w3psygs/PsychOfMusic2007.pdf

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About the author

Jim Donovan M.Ed., is a professional musician and educator. He's an Assistant Professor at Saint Francis University where he teaches music and how the power of sound can help you experience a healthier life.