April 26, 2021

Ever Heard of 8D Music? You’ll Never Listen To Music The Same Again…

This way of listening to music will blow your mind! Get your headphones ready! 🎧🎶

silver iPhone 6 with EarPods on brown wooden table

I am just beginning to really understand EMDR Therapy (Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing), specifically bilateral or biolateral music for Brainspotting. Basically, how bilateral works is the sound alternates between the left and right sides of the head in a steady, rhythmic pattern.

woman wearing black headphones

BIO-lateral, created by Dr. David Grand who began Brainspotting (BSP), increases the volume in the left ear and then decrease in volume before slowly increasing in volume in the right ear, then decreasing back and forth. This movement and volume shifts between left and right hemispheres of the brain.

Here is Dr. David Grand’s playlist of biolateral sound healing:

Who Could Benefit From This Type of Therapy?

EMDR is a psychotherapy treatment that was originally designed to alleviate the distress associated with traumatic memories. EMDR is considered effective because recalling distressing events and memories is often less upsetting when your attention is diverted. This allows you to be exposed to the memories or thoughts without having a strong psychological response. Over time, this technique is believed to lesson the impact the memories or thoughts have on you. [Learn more on Healthline]

EMDR might work well for you if you struggle to talk about your past, if you have been diagnosed with PTSD. It’s also effective for those diagnosed with depression, anxiety, ADHD, bipolar disorder, panic disorder, panic attacks, eating disorders, chronic fatigue, phobias, anger issues, chronic pain, or addictions.


woman in gray long sleeve shirt using macbook pro

Brainspotting (BSP) is a modified form of EMDR treatment method that works by identifying, processing and releasing core neurophysiological sources of emotional/body pain, trauma, dissociation and a variety of other challenging symptoms. BSP therapy is a neurobiological tool, not intended to replace the nurturing therapeutic presence of engaging with a human in person, who can build a trusting relationship where you feel heard, accepted and understood. BSP therapy is a tool that can be used to locate, focus, process and then release experiences and symptoms that are typically out of reach of the conscious mind. It works with the deep brain and the body through its direct access to the autonomic and limbic systems with the body’s central nervous system, stimulating and activating the body’s inherent capacity to heal itself from trauma. [Learn more about Brainspotting]

Bilateral & Biolateral Music Listening At Home

Using headphones, this music is specially designed to move from one ear to the other, helping you to turn inward and achieve a greater calm and focus.

man using earbuds

 “One of the most powerful healing, focusing, and performance enhancement tools known today… bilateral sound is a form of bilateral stimulation… [which] has been demonstrated extensively in studies to create a greater connection between your mind and your body. Bilateral stimulation is any action that alternately stimulates one side of the body, then the other. For example, natural bilateral stimulation activities include walking, running, dancing, biking and drumming, etc. So, bilateral sound is an auditory form of bilateral stimulation. It is created when a recording is moved from one ear to the other.”

Bilateral sounds are known to be effective because imaging studies show, naturally, that the limbic or emotional regions of the brain become more active when you are triggered. The bilateral sounds serve to create balance between the right and left hemispheres, which creates calm parallel to the activation of distressing memories. [Learn more on RMBSP]

“It is theorized that Brainspotting taps into and harnesses the body’s innate self-scanning capacity to process and release focused areas (systems) which are in a maladaptive homeostasis (frozen primitive survival modes). This may also explain the ability of Brainspotting to often reduce and eliminate body pain and tension associated with physical conditions.”

Dr. David Grand

Why It Works

Bilateral music relates to the orient reflex, which is a natural tendency for your nervous system to orient itself to a new stimuli. When your brain hears bilateral music it orients away from the linear thought, to the sound. Much like a deer suddenly hearing a rustling in the bushes. Normally, after a few moments after being distracted, your brain returns back to the previous thought (known as ‘habituation’), but with bilateral stimulation your brain cannot turn away from it, because it’s utilizing both hemispheres of the brain, drawing the attention and focus captive. As a result, two things happen:

  1. You’re no longer fixated on the problem / linear thought…
  2. You begin to feel more relaxed, less tension in your body, leading to changes in how the memory of the problem is stored…
man in black nike hoodie wearing black headphones

If you’ve been diagnosed with depression, anxiety, bipolar disorder, ADHD, PTSD, or other similar mental health conditions, it’s likely you experience some level of stress each day. Listening to bilateral, or binaural music daily (also referred to as 8D music), can prove to be beneficial as it helps give your brain some much needed relief and focus as it manages both sides of the brain in concert.

If you’ve experienced trauma in your past, it’s likely you’ve spent much of your life in ‘defense’ mode. You may feel like you have a challenging time trusting others, or trusting the future; when in fact your brain is placing up walls in an effort to protect itself from a threat of danger it believes will happen. While in ‘defense mode’, your brain is utilizing all of its resources to be on the ready to defend itself… this can take a tremendous toll on your physical [and mental] well-being, contributing to illnesses and intense stress and anxiety.

This type of music therapy can help move your brain away from defense mode, release the tension, allowing yourself to relax – no longer feeling like you have to stand on guard or feel vulnerable. By listening to this type of music as you go about your daily goals and tasks around your home, while you drive, or study; listening to this music you’re helping your brain function in a more balanced state. When you’re ready, you can take this type of therapy a step further as explained above ^ in this article, and attend some EMDR – Brainspotting therapy sessions with a trained professional therapist, to address the experiences of the past, and help yourself move forward on a path of complete healing and recovery.

woman in black crew neck shirt wearing black headphones

Below are a couple fun 8D Binaural music playlists I’m working on building, with a variety of styles of music with popular songs. Feel free to enjoy listening to them, or Dr. David Grand’s playlist I shared above^… if you have any suggestions of other 8D songs you find, please add them in a comment below! 🙂

If you found this article helpful, please share with your friends! Thank you! 💚

About the author

Becky Cooper, Certified Brain Health Coach. Often times we find ourselves in need of support in accomplishing life, health, and mindful goals. It takes a great amount of courage to recognize that you can’t do everything alone— we sometimes need someone to help us be accountable to what we truly desire to accomplish in life.  It has been said that it takes a village to raise a child; I feel it takes a tribe to help raise each other [up]. This is at the heart of what I do. 💚  I have found life to be easier when I accept that I am a 'work in progress', and that's enough. While I continue to learn and progress, taking life one step at a time, I can invite others along my journey and help them too; teaching them what I have learned, and encourage them. In December of 2020 I completed the Brain Health training course directed by Dr. Daniel Amen, graduating with the official certification as an Amen Clinics Certified Brain Health Coach. This not only has helped me learn valuable solutions to help myself heal, but also help others who feel the same way as I do; others who are also in search of healing.Read More...


adhd, Anxiety, Bipolar Disorder, Depression, EMDR, Mental Health Monday, music therapy, ptsd

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