After my divorce, singing lifted me out of depression
My Pop Choir, all its locations in the GTA, have members who've been traumatized by their own illness, by the illness and loss of loved ones, by divorce. All a part of life, but so very difficult to come out of. But they've returned term after term to My Pop Choir because of its community of support.
Recent studies have shown that singing, especially singing in harmony with others, is remarkably effective at combatting depression from any source. Indeed, those studies suggest that singing in harmony combats a number of conditions, including Parkinson’s and high blood pressure. The body’s rewards for screwing up the courage to sing include an outpouring of endorphins (pain relief), dopamine (pleasure, alertness) and serotonin (euphoria, contentment), as well as a reduction in cortisol (signals level of stress).
The corollary benefits of singing in a group are more social. We are not alone; we are part of an organism greater than us, one that we can fold ourselves into. For a brief time, we can dispose of our natural selfishness and bathe in a happy, harmonious experience.
From: "After my divorce, singing lifted me out of depression” by Nelson Smith, November 2016 - The Globe and Mail