An Experiment in Silence Day 1

Note: I decided to give up aural media for two weeks. This meant I would mute music, films, TV, YouTube, audiobooks and other media at all times. The point was to minimize unnecessary junk entering my ears in my daily life.

The first day did not begin quite as well as I had hoped. The radio was on during breakfast and it would have been silly to ask it to be turned off. We listened to a lecture on British agriculture and some music. I cannot remember anything about the music, but the lecturer had an annoying voice and was obviously reading her presentation from a paper. The rest of the day was better. I went to the gym and wore noise-cancelling earbuds which blocked out the music from the speakers very well. Again, no memory of any of the music that did get past the noise-cancelling.

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I noticed three things. First, I was very fidgety. My attention span was short and I moved from one potential distraction to the next all the time. Second, songs that I had heard a long time ago kept playing in my head like a constant flow of earworms that were at times annoying and pleasant at other times. Earlier I would have put on some background music, perhaps listened to the songs that came to me and eventually moved on to some others. Now, I let them repeat freely and, among other things, analyzed the guitar riffs I heard. This made me want to make music myself. Thirdly, the day went by incredibly slowly. It sounds odd, but it really felt like there were more hours in the day.

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