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Ever had an annoying song stuck in your head? We’ve all been there before. You hear a song you despise and suddenly the song is stuck in our head leaving you to suffer an endless loop that will not go away. You try to fight it and ignore it, but the torture remains. You try listening to something else or watching TV, but there is still that nagging song in your head. Then you wonder, how long do you have to suffer before it just goes away?
Worry no more, there might be a solution to break that cycle.
Researchers claim the best way to stopping the phenomenon, sometimes known as earworms – where snippets of a catchy song inexplicably play like a broken record in your brain – is to solve some tricky anagrams.
This can force the intrusive music out of your working memory, they say, allowing it to be replaced with other more amenable thoughts.
After I read this article, I realized it’s been a very, very long time since I experienced earworms. While I don’t do anagrams, I do read and consume a lot of material whether it’s for learning and keeping up to date with what’s going on or reading and filtering through information to post here at SOAO.
Why would anagrams or a good novel work?
“The key is to find something that will give the right level of challenge,” said Dr Ira Hyman, a music psychologist at Western Washington University who conducted the research. “If you are cognitively engaged, it limits the ability of intrusive songs to enter your head.
“Something we can do automatically like driving or walking means you are not using all of your cognitive resource, so there is plenty of space left for that internal jukebox to start playing.
So there you have it. To get rid of that song in your head, choose something engaging enough, neither too hard or to easy in order to rid the earworms and pretty much force it out of your brain.
Read the rest of this article: Get that tune out of your head – scientists find how to get rid of earworms