Most of you reading will probably remember making mix tapes—finding those perfect songs that would get you in the mood for any situation. You know the ones: the game day tape; the road trip anthology, parts one, two and three; the rainy day moody mix; and the classic workout jams.
But have you tried applying the same concept to your workday? The not-so-secret weapon to productivity and staying focused is the perfect background noise. Office atmospheres can fluctuate between disturbingly loud to distractingly quiet. Creating your own white noise could be the key to getting the most out of your day.
Is there a best option? Just like taste in music, background noise is also incredibly personal. Studies have suggested, however, that lyrics are the only things that should be avoided when doing language-based work such as reading or writing. Otherwise, the choice is yours! Do you prefer classical music? Or one of those nifty ambiance websites that play sound effects that make your cubicle feel like a bustling coffee shop? When you find the perfect background noise, try only listening to it when you are trying to work. This will associate that noise or music with concentrating and help you get focused faster.
My personal recommendation is always movie and video game soundtracks. Even if you aren’t a fan of button mashing, hop on YouTube and give some popular game themes a listen. After all, these tracks were specifically designed to provide background noise and ambiance for the players.
Happy listening! And always remember: headphones are your friends!
This post was brought to you in part by a Koji Kondo Pandora Station.