This blog article is meant to be a supplement to my previous article on the subject of headphones. If you haven't read that original article, I highly recommend it. You can find the article in question here.
I still let my headphones gather dust in my drawer, with one small exception, the gym. For this, however, I got myself headphones which are put on the ear and not inserted. The reason for this, as mentioned in the previous article, is that it is simply better for the ears. But since I usually meet with friends for sports it happens about once a week that I use the headphones. On the way to work, when taking the train, when walking or even when I do small errands I continue to do without headphones. Since I have not worn headphones in everyday life for over a year now, I would like to share my experience.
What I would like to clarify first of all is that I do not think that my life has turned 180° because of the renunciation of the "continuous" sound. However, I must also openly and honestly admit that I do not really miss it. It's up to everyone whether they leave the headphones in their pocket for the five-minute walk to the bakery or not.
For my part, I enjoy the peace and quiet on my way to work in the morning. Of course, this is now and then broken by the traffic of the city or by any conversations of other passers-by. But all in all, I would say that these 20 minutes of quiet in the morning help me a lot to start the day. I can, without distraction, go through the daily routine and think about what is still pending. On the way home, I usually go through the rest of the schedule again, because usually a few things have changed.
Even on my walks through the nearby park I still enjoy the birdsong, the barking dogs and the conversations of the people you pass. It is simply not the worst thing to occupy yourself with your own thoughts and also to enjoy them.
Where I personally find it difficult to do without headphones are long train rides. Of course, these are usually excellent to browse in a book or to enjoy the view, but you know it only too well that it can also be louder in the train. It can be difficult to tune out the other passengers so as not to be distracted from reading. But even that is only a question of practice. In the meantime, it has become much easier for me not to let myself be distracted from my reading.
At this point, however, I would also like to make a small confession. Before the last vacation with my girlfriend I have allowed me on the way to her, that is, the walk to the streetcar and the streetcar ride to listen to music. Here I was surprised how the music gave me directly a dopamine rush. I walked almost dancing and even in the streetcar I had a slight smile on my lips the whole time. This experience has strengthened me in my endeavor to continue to do without the headphones. Because in my opinion it is a good thing to fast dopamine where you can, especially when it is as simple as just leaving the headphones off.
Have you ever gone without headphones for a day or a week? If you've also had experiences on this topic, feel free to share them with us in the comments.