There’s a plethora of studies analyzing the validity of listening to music at work. We know it can boost productivity and improve your mood, but before now, there’s been little to no specifics on how genres effect efficiency for differing tasks.

Thankfully, there’s finally a couple studies that will help you choose your genre of background music to enhance your work efficiency.

Improve productivity with these genres based on what you’re working on

For reading and writing

A study published in Applied Cognitive Psychology determined music with native language or any spoken word greatly interfered with the creative process of reading and writing.

The best productivity was a result of silence or white noise, so it’s best to stick to natural music or silence if this is what you’re working on.

For brainstorming and creative endeavors

This study concludes that music in the major keys helps encourage divergent thinking, otherwise known as creativity. Songs written in major keys often feel cheerful, so if you’re stuck in a rut or feeling uninspired, put on a happy tune to get your imagination going.

For number crunching

If you feel like your job title could be ‘excel monkey’, repetitive, low volume music is for you. Lyrical music can be used here, unlike during reading, but really any music that creates momentum or a feeling or moving forward helps with repetitive tasks.

For when you’re overloaded

This one might seem like a no brainer, but if you’re feeling stressed or anxious with the amount of work you have to do, listening to soothing music can help you relax and feel less slammed with a never ending to do list.

Does your genre preference change depending on what you’re working on, or do you stick to one style no matter what? Let us know on Twitter.