If you look around your office at your co-workers, it’s probably accurate to say a majority of them is listening to music while working. I personally find that music disrupts my work, so I’m that person who goes headphone-free while typing away at my desk. However, my work method seems to be completely correct. According to a neuroscientist, listening to music while you work isn’t the best habit.
A writer at Business Insider sought the help of Daniel Levitin, a cognitive neuroscientist and the author of This is Your Brain on Music, to get to the bottom of this. Levitin says it’s actually less productive to listen to music while working.
He went on to say that in almost every case study performed in research tests, your performance while reading or writing “suffers considerably when you listen to music.” Instead of listening to music while working, Levitin suggests listening to music 10-15 minutes before starting any type of work.
The reason is because music puts you in a better, more positive mood. It also relaxes you and that leads to your brain releasing dopamine and serotonin, which will allow you to focus more.
The exception to Levitin’s advice? When you’re performing monotonous tasks where it’s easy to get bored. For example, a long road trip or working on an assembly line.