Jul 21, 2022 in Life Coaching

Bob Dylan

How music can shape us

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Bob Dylan


One of my favorite writers and singers of all time is Bob Dylan. His writing and music has helped to shape my life and some of my outspoken-ness. He wrote during a very tumultuous time in the history of the United States (and here we are again). I doubt that my kids will read this, so I think I’m Okay…I spent the first part of my life rebelling against my parents ideals and now I’m rebelling against my kids’ (the circle of life? Lol). “Bob” almost always has a song that fits my mood, and he is especially good to listen to in the fall or on rainy days. My favorites right now are:

  1. Every Grain of Sand
  2. Hurricane
  3. Workingman’s Blues #2
  4. House Carpenter
  5. Mississippi
  6. Lily, Rosemary and the Jack of Hearts
  7. When The Deal goes down
  8. Tangled up in Blue
  9. With God on our side
  10. Idiot Wind
  11. To make you feel my love
  12. Only a Hobo
  13. Nettie Moore
  14. The man in me
  15. It’s all over now baby blue

I could go on and on! The song that I believe to be the most relevant right now is “With God on our side”. If you haven’t heard the song, it is about how in times of unrest and war that in essence, each side of the conflict believes that God is on their side. To me this is an interesting concept which also brings up another idea that is not new to me, “What if we are all are just trying to do the best we can?” For real! I will lay out what it could look like:

  1. Someone cuts me off in traffic

Response 1: Swear and pound the dashboard

Response 2: Turn up your music and sing


Response 3: Decide that there must be an emergency, or they wouldn’t be rushing around.


  1. I am in line at the grocery store, and someone is just chatting with the cashier, so it seems like it is taking forever for the line to move forward:


Response 1: Start loudly sighing and shifting from foot to foot.


Response 2: Remark out loud that some of us are in a hurry.


Response 3: Think to “myself” that maybe the person is lonely and in need of human contact.


  1. I am in line at the pharmacy and the person ahead of me is talking to the cashier and is clearly angry and saying all kinds of mean things to the person helping them in a loud voice.


Response 1: Do nothing when it is my turn and pretend that the person before didn’t do anything hurtful.


Response 2: Tell myself that the person behind the counter is trained to handle angry customers.


Response 3: Tell the person helping me that, they did not deserve it and that I hope things get better and I know they are short staffed.


  1. My husband decides to organize my area of the closet


Response 1: Think to myself, “How dare he? I like how it was arranged!” I confront him saying exactly what I had been thinking and we fight about it.


Response 2: Say nothing about it and keep my thoughts to myself and let the resentments fester.


Response 3: Take a deep breath, wait a few minutes and think of an alternative reason for why he rearranged things, like he was innocently trying to help me find my things better by placing like items together.

Those are a few examples of how slowing down and waiting out acting on our thoughts can help change interactions. They are all also examples of how certain musical artists can point out a collective view of how things are in society and how they can be.




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