Staying focused while at work or studying can be hard, especially now that the Internet has added itself as a major distraction on top of the many that already exist in the physical universe we live in.

We realize that we are all different, and that some of us can focus better than others. Some of us have limited attention span, restlessness and distractibility, while others can concentrate more easily. Regardless, music can be a key factor in keeping focused while at work or studying.

Many people listen to music while they’re carrying out a task, whether they’re studying for an exam, driving a vehicle or even reading a book. Many of these people argue that background music helps them focus.

Why, though? When you think about it, that doesn’t make much sense. Why would having two things to concentrate on make you more focused, not less? Some people even go so far as to say that not having music on is more distracting. So what’s going on there?

An article by The Guardian explains this well:

Music is a very useful tool in such situations. It provides non-invasive noise and pleasurable feelings, to effectively neutralize the unconscious attention system’s ability to distract us. It’s much like giving small children a new toy to play with while you’re trying to get some work done without them disturbing you.”

It seems clear that the type of noise, or music, is important. This may seem obvious: someone listening to classical music while they work wouldn’t seem at all unusual, but if they were listening to thrash metal it would be thought very strange indeed.

While the nature and style of the music can cause specific responses in the brain, some studies suggest that it really is down to personal preference. Music you like increases focus, while music you don’t impedes it.

Since we all enjoy electronic music, we have put together a list of mixes we have ourselves listened to while working and studying. We hope that in sharing these you can not only discover new music, but also boost productivity at work or while studying:

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