Music Helps Me Deal with ADHD

January 17, 2023 Michael Thomas Kincella

In my opinion, music is one of humankind's greatest accomplishments. Since the dawn of time, people have produced harmonic sounds to assist in celebrations, to add color to ceremonies, and as a way to relax. In addition, some people with attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) use music to help them concentrate on tasks. I am one of those people.

I Use Criteria to Select Music for ADHD

Like many other people with ADHD, I listen to the same songs over and over again. When I need to concentrate on certain tasks, I have a few well-worn playlists I gravitate towards because I know this type of music works as I need it to work. For writing or studying, the music needs to be interesting but not too interesting. It needs to be pleasant but not too pleasant. I need to know it's on, but I sort of need to forget about it, too.

Uninteresting Music Helps Me Concentrate the Most with ADHD

The music that meets most of the criteria is the simple, repetitive, ambient music you can find on YouTube with a quick search. Aside from this basic, ambient-style music, deep house can also work well. However, if a set is too interesting or I enjoy a track too much, it rules itself out as a suitable candidate in the future. That's because "interesting" often means "attention-splitting." As someone with ADHD, I struggle enough with compromised attention. If I like a certain track too much, I'm inclined to abandon whatever it is I'm working on to veer deep down metaphorical warrens and learn all about the artist who made the track. Ultimately, if I'm focusing on the music, then the music isn't doing its job.

I Use Different Music for ADHD for Different Tasks

The unobtrusive music I use to help me concentrate on writing tasks is great. However, this type of music isn't suitable across the board. For example, I use up-tempo music to maintain a certain rhythm while I jump rope. In this scenario, the study music would be useless.

Similarly, I like having rock music in my ears when I lift weights. A looping, repetitive style of music just doesn't match the activity. If I'm making music selection sound like a military operation or a chore, that isn't the case. Thanks to streaming services, picking music is usually a breeze. But, if you have ADHD, then you might recognize how vital it is to have things in a certain way.

Do you have ADHD and use music to help you concentrate on tasks? Let me know in the comments.

See also:

APA Reference
Thomas, M. (2023, January 17). Music Helps Me Deal with ADHD, HealthyPlace. Retrieved on 2024, June 14 from

Author: Michael Thomas Kincella

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