The Best Songs To Reduce Anxiety And Stress

Press play and unwind.

Anxiety has a way of sending you into a tailspin of worry and dread. And when that happens, it can make you feel closed off and interfere with your relationships and goals.

Everyone experiences anxiety on some scale. It could be from situations that are totally out of your control or things you’re just nervous about, such as a work project or tough conversation.

But here’s the good news: This type of stress doesn’t have to take over your life. There are several ways to cope. One method? Listening to some mellow tunes. One study even found music may lower anxiety and cortisol levels (the stress hormone) in the body.

With this in mind, we asked HuffPost editors and our Facebook community to share their favorite songs that help them stay calm. Take a look below:

1. Bye, Bye, Bye ― *NSYNC

“It never fails to make me want to dance, which research shows can reduce stress.” ―Lindsay Holmes, HuffPost Deputy Healthy Living Editor

2. Shadow Days ― John Mayer

“It is empowering. It reminds me of everything I’ve made it through. So, when I’m anxious, I listen to it to get myself back and remind myself that I’ll get through whatever it is.” --Ashley Tucker via Facebook

3. Sunday Morning ― Maroon 5

“The whole ‘Songs About Jane’ album is a nostalgia trigger for me (which can produce happy feelings!) and this song in particular just puts me at ease thanks to the melody.” ―Lindsay Holmes, HuffPost Deputy Healthy Living Editor

4. Shake It Off ― Taylor Swift

“This song is an instant mood-booster. I find myself literally shimmy-ing my shoulders to let go of whatever is bothering me.” ―Allison Fox, HuffPost Lifestyle Trends Writer

5. Butterfly ― Mariah Carey

―Jillian Breska via Facebook

6. Stay ― Lisa Loeb

“It brings me from an 11 on the anxiety scale right back down to the functional range.” ―Tricia Durkin via Facebook

7. Float On ― Modest Mouse

―Angela Schlagenhaft via Facebook

8. Ooh Child ― Cover by Beth Orton

“The lyrics speak for themselves. ‘Some day, we’ll get it together, and we’ll get it all done. Some day, when your head is much lighter.’” ―Jordan Turgeon, HuffPost Senior Contributors Editor

9. I Can See Clearly Now ― Johnny Nash

“I immediately slow down and take deep breaths when I hear the first cords of this song. Deep breathing can spark an emotional and physical state of deep rest, by decreasing heart rate, blood pressure and muscle tension.” ―Allison Fox, HuffPost Lifestyle Trends Writer

10. Use Me ― Bill Withers

“So relaxing and fun. I love the DGAF vibe.” ―Kate Palmer, HuffPost Editorial Director of Lifestyle

11. Porcelain ― Moby

―Isa Hart via Facebook

12. Three Little Birds ― Bob Marley

“Singing the mantra, ‘Every little thing is gonna be alright,’ helps me chill out. Research shows mantras can help you relax.” ―Allison Fox, HuffPost Lifestyle Trends Writer

13. Terrapin StationThe Grateful Dead

―JW Maupin via Facebook

14. Spiegel Im Spiegel ― Angele Dubeau

―Louise Pitcher via Facebook

15. Steve McQueen ― M83

―MC Collins via Facebook

16. I’m Still Here ― Pearl Jam

―Ashley Jourige via Facebook

17. True Colors ― Cyndi Lauper

“It’s a reminder that no matter how the world looks at you, there is always a way to shine.” ―Bailey Sonday via Facebok

18. Aqueous Transmission ― Incubus

“Lead singer Brandon Boyd jokingly said that the purpose of the song was to make ‘the listener pee in his/her pants from relaxation.’” ―Grace Tato via Facebook

BRB, heading to our headphones to chill.

Listen to the stress-relieving songs in the playlist below:

Before You Go