The power of music has been leveraged in healing since at least the fifth and fourth century B.C., and is known to have been used in ancient Greece. Famous Greek philosophers Pythagoras, Aristotle, and Plato were some of the earliest to acknowledge the healing power of music.

Today, music is known to reduce anxiety, relieve stress, and even aid in recovery from brain injury. Alexander Pantelyat, Neurologist and director of Johns Hopkins Center for Music and Medicine says, “Just listening to music activates more brain regions simultaneously than any other human activity, [. . .] There is likely something for everyone when it comes to using music as medicine.”

The power of music can also positively impact those in recovery from addiction. These 10 songs have been credited with helping individuals overcome drug addiction.

1."Not Afraid" by Eminem

Eminem himself struggled with addiction and even almost died in 2007. Now in recovery, he continues to dedicate this song to those who are struggling with an addiction or dependence on opioids.

2."Stronger" by Kelly Clarkson

“Stronger” is a song that promotes the undeniable value of overcoming obstacles or challenges and turning these “battles” into positive experiences. For those suffering from addiction, this can mean viewing completing a detox treatment as a proud accomplishment; that overcoming addiction and entering recovery has made them a stronger person.

3."Rise Up" by Andra Day

When asked about the inspiration behind “Rise Up”, singer/songwriter Andra Day said, “ "Rise Up" started as a sort of prayer—I thought about what I needed to hear to be able to get back on my feet.“ This song serves as an anthem to keep working toward overcoming challenges and obstacles; to keep fighting for what you want. For those in recovery, this song is a reminder to “rise up” and keep fighting for a life free from addiction.

4."Survivor" by Destiny's Child

This pop hit dominated the airwaves in the early 2000s and still influences listeners today. For Destiny’ Child, “Survivor" was about their dedication to “work harder, never give up and rise to the top and remain relevant to prove all their critics wrong.” The message to work hard and prove critics wrong drives those struggling with addiction to push through tough days and negative habitual thinking.

5."Eye of the Tiger" by Survivor

“Eye of the Tiger” is a classic song that has been highlighted in movies, TV shows, and all types of entertainment for decades. But at its core, it is a powerful dedication to the endless drive to be the best version of yourself.

6."I Will Survive" by Gloria Gaynor

This epic hit is a crowd favorite for its upbeat tempo and catchy lyrics. In fact, it is the lyrics that make it a popular song among those in addiction recovery. "I Will Survive" lyrics encourage resilience, inner strength, and the ability to overcome difficult circumstances, both of which are critical in recovery.


7."Roar" by Katy Perry

“Roar” by Katy Perry was a 2013 hit that promoted a message of self-empowerment and self-confidence that inspired individuals as they navigated the path to freedom from addiction, to stand up for themselves.

8."Ain't No Mountain High Enough" by Marvin Gaye and Tammi Terrell

Despite being over 56 years old, "Ain't No Mountain High Enough" is still the force of nature it was when it was released in 1967. Lyrically, the song is about nothing being able to stop a partner from being there for the other partner. For someone in recovery from addiction, this is seen as nothing being able to stop them from reaching their sobriety goals.

9."I'm Still Standing" by Elton John

While this uptempo song is about standing strong after a break-up, it conveys a message of finding confidence and standing strong in the face of difficult situations. For those in addiction recovery, the lyrics "I'm Still Standing" serves as an anthem to resilience against addiction.

10."Don't Stop Believin' by Journey

Journey has inspired generations of music lovers with their powerful ballads, upbeat tunes, insightful lyrics, and more. "Don't Stop Believin' is a megahit about being open to what the world has to offer and not stopping believing, even on the toughest of days. For someone in recovery from addiction, this song serves as motivation to keep fighting for sobriety, no matter how hard it gets.

Everyone's journey with addiction is different and the music that helps one person may not be as effective for another. If you are ready to get on the path to freedom from addiction, the Coleman Institute can help. Schedule a callback with us today to learn about your outpatient addiction treatment and detox options.