Music, the Musician, and Mental Health

Episode 22 – Anastasia Canfield

Anastasia Canfield – Board-certified music therapist, Licensed counselor, Professional music teacher, and Performer

“There is something about music that provides a safe space. There was something about music that creates this safe vulnerability.” – Anastasia

“Just do it. It’s never going to be an easy time. It’s never going to be a comfortable time so just start.” – Anastasia

Anastasia Canfield is a Neurodivergent clinician and academic specializing in music therapy with individuals with severe and persistent mental illness and neurodiversity. She offers music therapists and mental health professionals training in cultural competence and combating compassion fatigue by recognizing and mitigating “impostor syndrome” in the healthcare field. Her leadership as a music therapy practicum and internship supervisor has been defined as empowering and innovative while, at the same time, optimally challenging and supportive. Today, she shares how music can help with mental health issues, and her work as a musician.

Standout Quotes:

“There is something about music that provides a safe space. There was something about music that creates this safe vulnerability.” – Anastasia

“Just do it. It’s never going to be an easy time. It’s never going to be a comfortable time so just start.” – Anastasia

“Always keep creativity in your life. It is a human part of us that I think can so easily be lost, especially in the hustle and bustle of work and trying to figure out what the world looks like these days. We all need to be creative in our respective ways.” – Anastasia

Key Takeaways:

Music was part of Anastasia’s everyday world growing up. In high school, music was admittedly the only thing that understood her. What seems like any other high school project kickstarted her to look at a music education program. The program had an intro course into music therapy, which solidified her career path.

One memory stood out to Anastasia during her time as a music instructor when a teenage girl confided in her about her life at home. Hearing this girl’s story and how Anastasia’s music class provided her a safe place, she continued to reinforce her mission to bring healing through music.

There’s a pivotal moment where a person has had enough with the status quo and takes action to bring about change. One of Anastasia’s mentors gave her the nudge, and she needed to make the change and help people in a way that she knew could make a difference.

Talking is limiting. The speech centers of our brain are higher-order functions. Communication has just become more and more advanced. It’s not innate to us, and communication is, but speech and language aren’t. However, music is a great way to reach someone who has experienced something traumatic because trauma is experiential.

Research says that you need experiential therapy to target experiential trauma truly. Music is one of those things that reaches a different part of our brain than just talking. It can regulate us in other ways than talking does. However, music therapy is not just effective for us. It can also be something that can help us to learn more about ourselves.

Episode Timeline:

[00:07] Meet today’s guest “Anastasia Canfield”

[03:17] What’s your favorite instrument?

[04:16] What is your earliest memory of music?

[05:09] What was your defining moment in music?

[09:26] What kept you motivated throughout your entire formal education journey?

[11:51] Transition from Education to Business

[16:29] What do you imagine your Music Practice to be in the future?

[18:03] How have you used music to help somebody overcome something?

[22:52] Who should consider music therapy and why?

[28:26] How did you deliver therapy change when COVID-19 became a thing?

[34:41] Is there a difference in the person’s age when working with them?

[37:24] Have you noticed a trend of people who need therapy directly related to working from home?

[43:03] What is Ethnomusicology?

[45:46] What’s been one of the challenges as a music performer?

[48:03] What’s your favorite hidden gem in Colorado?

[49:20] What’s one piece of advice you would give to someone moving to Colorado?

Learn more about Anastasia Canfield

Website: https://www.creativeremediesllc.com/

https://anastasiarosemusic.com/

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/anastasiaandthemusic

Instagram: https://instagram.com/anastasiarosemusic

LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/in/anastasia-canfield/