by Gian Macatangay
One of the little wonders you’ll experience in life is listening to the blissfully relaxing tunes of your shuffled chill playlist while sipping a cup of warm coffee late in the evening. It is an extraordinary feeling as you take a break from the world. Just relaxing and vibing – as you mentally prepare yourself for that homework due two weeks ago.
In my almost six years of stay in college, coffee and music are my two necessities when preparing for a task. Before anything else, the first thing I do is get a cup of coffee and choose the right music to vibe to. Below are the personal discoveries I would like to share as my combo on coffee and music and how it can improve schoolwork.
- BLACK COFFEE/AMERICANO & LOFI MUSIC: to help keep you up and awake.
Black coffee and Americano are known for their strong taste that kicks your brain up and running. Whether you prefer the dark and earthy flavor of the Americano blend or the mature and aromatic flavor of the black brewed drip, these drinks will help you go the extra mile.
I usually reserve these powerful beasts for time-demanding tasks like research papers and projects that I have to cram overnight. In my experience, strong blends like black coffees and americanos help me unleash the hidden powers I never knew I had! My personal record? Finishing a 3-page essay in under two hours. That’s right.
However, with great coffees, come great caffeine levels. Drinking strong blends sometimes makes my heart beat abnormally fast. To chill me down, I play some Low-Fidelity (LO-FI) beats in the background. These soft mellow beats blend well in the background while writing or reading something, and more importantly, it helps in keeping my heart rate at a relaxing and smooth pace.
Like yin and yang, they balance each other. I personally love that dark taste and high levels of caffeine that keep your energy up while the mellow beats bring you back down to the perfect momentum for productivity.
- ICED or HOT COFFEE & CLASSICAL MUSIC: to improve your focus.
For tasks that require total concentration like math problems, statistics, formulas, calculations, etc. What I recommend is a soothing environment that sets the stage right and isn’t too much or too less to be a distraction.
Whether iced or hot, nothing is more plain and simple than coffee the way you want it. This is basically your own coffee recipe mixed with milk, creamer, and/or sugar or whatever you want. You can’t go wrong with your own blend!
Personally, I prefer iced coffee since it can get really hot in the Philippines sometimes. Hot coffees are for rainy days and brrr-months to keep your system warm and cozy. I just add some milk and 2 tablespoons of sugar and I’m good to go!
Then, choosing the right music is a vital decision. When studying, I like my music to be familiar but not disturbing. I personally prefer listening to instrumental acoustic or piano music like soundtracks from Studio Ghibli movies or some classical orchestra symphonies. They do not have penetrable lyrics that could cause a distraction to academic work. This way, I can stay up and focus on the task at hand in a controlled environment.
- CAPPUCCINO/LATTES & ACOUSTIC VERSIONS OF SONGS: to help you relax and take a break.
Some lessons and assignments can be overwhelming and stressful. Hence, it is important to relax and take a break from time to time to refresh your mind.
I find listening to acoustic versions of my favorite songs the best way to relax during breaks. And of course, while sipping on a warm cup of caffeinated drink.
Cappuccinos and Lattes go really well with my acoustic playlist. These two famous drinks always come with either steamed milk, cocoa powder, cinnamon powder, or foam on top. Nothing is more soothing than warm cups of milky blends to boost your break experience. What is amazing is that somehow these drinks do make my breaks feel longer and drain more stress out from my body that left me refreshed and ready for continuing tasks.
- FRAPPES and POP MUSIC: to reward yourself for a job well done.
What’s the best way to celebrate a finished task? Grab a coffee!
Frappés are fun drinks made for celebration and good times. It’s a sweet blend mixed with different kinds of flavors that varies in different cafes. Most cafes would have popular flavors like milk tea, vanilla, strawberry, and matcha. However, I have seen some cafes that make crazy flavors from famous dessert brands like Twix, KitKat, Oreo, and Speculoos. Frappes are basically a dose of wonderland in a cup!
I personally prefer the matcha green tea frappuccino from Starbucks whenever I want to reward myself with a job well done. This time, I can listen to whatever music I want but I usually go for the live music to sing out loud to and do a little happy dance!
As you can see, music and coffee are your buddies when it comes to tedious homework and assignments. No matter what genre or flavor, they can be a really big help! You should try them sometime.