This is a bit of fun and an interesting test in the office.
According to new psych research, the type of music you like is linked to the way you think – and ultimately your career. A study led by David Greenberg and Dr Jason Rentfrow of 4,000 people found that ‘although people’s music choices fluctuate over time, a persons empathy levels and thinking style predicts what type of music they like…in fact their cognitive style – whether they’re strong on empathy or strong on systems – can be a better predictor of what music they like than their personality’.
So here’s the breakdown:
If you’re an ‘empathiser’ – ie. you’re people oriented and focused on the emotions of others – you’re likely to enjoy more mellow, and ‘unpretentious music’ like Norah Jones ‘Come Away with Me’, Billie Halliday ‘All of Me’, or Jeff Buckley’s ‘Hallelujah’. Empathisers tend to end up in careers like carers or psychologists.
On the other end of the spectrum is you’re a ‘Systemiser’ ie. people who look for rules and patterns to understand the world and have less interest in emotions – you’re more likely to enjoy more ‘intense’ forms of music like Vivaldi’s ‘Concerto in C’, The Sex Pistols ‘God Save the Queen’, or Metallica’s ‘Enter the Sandman’. Systemisers tend to end up in careers like engineering or mathematics.
So what does this all mean really?
‘This line of research highlights how music is a mirror or the self. Music is an expression of who we are emotionally, sociality and cognitively’ says the study’s author.
So the next time someone in the office plays music aloud, maybe you might learn a bit more about them aside from their ‘poor taste’.