By Ramiro Bustamante Torres, December 18 2020 —
A therapist of mine once said that the best way to deal with your emotions is to feel them and acknowledge them. I agree, especially since quarantine has driven many of us to explore our inner psyche and come to terms with things we’ve been avoiding. For example, the ever increasing list of shows you promised a friend you would most definitely watch, “once I find the time,” and then it felt like you had no excuse. While avoiding may provide a temporary solution, it can lead to a more distressing situation — a mental breakdown. After letting everything pile up inside you, it’s only natural that it will come crashing down if not dealt with. My suggestion is if you’re going to hit rock bottom, might as well give it a soundtrack.
I am offering five songs that are on my go-to playlist in hopes that you can also ride out your own mental rollercoaster.
“Nobody” by Mitski
We’re starting strong with this one. This one is for when your pet rejects you after giving them cuddles, or when your friend takes one minute too long to respond to your snap of you petting a dog you found on your walk home. The inexplicable loneliness that washes over you can be enough to drive you overboard. The best way to listen to this song is on a floatie in the middle of a pool. I understand not everyone has a pool and it’s winter, but for the latter, including a winter coat can add to the drama of it all. Otherwise, your bedroom floor will do.
“Ribs” by Lorde
Ms. Lorde has given so much to the world already. Her songs have reached deep into our souls and found a way to express our innermost emotions into a beautiful medium. It has laid bare too many emotions and therefore it must be added to this list. While there might be better songs that can suit your needs to ride out your mental breakdown in Lorde’s repertoire, I feel like this one is the most universal. From her debut album Pure Heroine, this song truly strikes at our nostalgia. If paired with “Supercut” from Melodrama, you can achieve full catharsis from your nostalgia.
“Fast Car” by Tracy Chapman
This one is a classic. Have you ever had the urge to run away to another city and start over? Then this one is perfect for you! With this song you can imagine yourself leaving your small town somewhere in Midwest U.S. to a bigger, better city. The urge to run away can come from something as small as missing the sale on a favorite item of yours to something as big as your third focaccia of the week not turning out the way you wanted. So, get your keys and drive out, or take the bus (don’t forget your mask!), to the nearest open field and just let go.
“Winner Takes it All” by ABBA
You can either go with the original or the Mamma Mia version with Meryl Streep. Or if you’re feeling adventurous, the Broadway versions. Was your test mark not reflective of the amount of studying you did? Did you let your life become ruined by that podcast you only just started listening to and now you want to catch up, forgetting your responsibilities? It’s only natural to accept the way things resulted and now you seek catharsis. I do suggest warming up before attempting to sing along with this song, you’ll feel better if you can hit the notes.
“The Final Countdown” by Europe
Now you’re probably wondering why this one is here. Sometimes it’s good to just feel your emotions through, but what is even better is to keep moving. If you have ever left anything for the last minute and now it seems you don’t have enough time to finish it, you will need a song to motivate you to finish. Now this song may not be the best for everyone, but I assure you, dear reader, any song with a high enough BPM and synthesized horns can be the key to power through your assignments. With the lyrics yelling “it’s the final countdown,” you can let the sense of urgency drive you ahead, with maybe a cup of coffee or two. Just remember to rest well after.
This article is part of our humour section.