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Sound health

Last weekend, our neighbours had a party. There was laughing, shouting, and loud music playing. It was so noisy, we even had to close our windows. Late at night the party stopped and my body immediately relaxed, as if my breath was finally able to expand again.

I hadn’t realised how much impact this noise was having on my body and mood. It only lasted a few hours, but I became more irritated, a hint of anger lingered and my neck muscles became tense.

The world is full of sound. Julian Treasure, a sound specialist, argues that sounds can not only be healing and relaxing but can also badly affect our health and generate enormous stress on our system.
One of his main points is that we should start listening more consciously to the sounds that surround us.

Listen to his talk and learn how you can improve your health with sound.

Here is also a great exercise, I found at The Emotion Machine, to practice conscious listening. You will be amazed how many sounds you can hear.

Get out a piece of paper and a pen, and then write down all the sounds you can hear within a 5 minute span.

It is an incredibly simple exercise, but it helps cultivate skillful listening, and it makes you aware of things in your auditory world that you are otherwise unconscious of. Here is an example of a short two-session practice I did the other day. The first is in the afternoon, the second is later that night:

SEPT 23 – SOUNDS – 2:00PM – 2:05PM – Outside – Backyard – Sunny Day

Wind in trees
Wind pushing against fence
Birds chirping
Cricket chirping (faint)
Construction work
Wind chimes
Cars driving (in distance)
Fly buzzing
Motorcycle (going fast)
Water hose
Dog barking

SEPT 23 – SOUNDS – 9:30PM – 9:35PM – Outside – Backyard – Clear Night
Pond waterfall (loud)
Crickets (lots!)
Eminem song playing
Someone cough
Gate rattling
Door open
Cars driving

You might also want to read:
Clutter and mind
Create space for clarity
How to reduce distractions and stay focused

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One Response to “Sound health”

  1. eduardo Says:

    baggy@embarrassingly.swallow” rel=”nofollow”>.…

    good info!…

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