Journal Article

Emotional intelligence, alexithymia, stress and peoples’ reasons for listening to music


The present study investigated the relationship between people’s reasons for listening to music, trait emotional intelligence and alexithymia whilst also controlling for the effect of participants’ gender, age and perceived stress levels. In keeping with previous research, initial findings indicated that emotionally intelligent individuals were less likely to use music to relieve and alleviate negative moods, whilst those who had high scores on a measure of alexithymia were more likely to use music for the same reasons. However, when the effects of gender, age and perceived stress were controlled for these relationships were no longer significant and previously non-significant relationships between trait emotional intelligence and using music to manipulate arousal and to reminisce about the past were found to be significant. Together these findings suggest that emotional intelligence is related to the reasons why people listen to music but not in the way that previous research had suggested, and the apparent links between emotional intelligence and mood management might be might be better explained by the stress experienced by participants at the time of questioning.

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Lonsdale, Adam J.

Oxford Brookes departments

Faculty of Health and Life Sciences\Department of Psychology, Health and Professional Development


Year of publication: 2018
Date of RADAR deposit: 2018-03-27

Creative Commons License This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 4.0 International License

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