If there was one thing that stood out to me about New York, it was how noisy it seemed to be. Perhaps more so in Brooklyn than Manhattan.
I would consider myself fairly sensitive to sounds and noises. So the moment I stepped foot onto the Brooklyn streets, I felt my heart sped up in reaction to my newly discovered surroundings. In addition to the franticness that ensued visually, the added scattered noises made me feel REALLY anxious.
The one combination of sounds that particularly irked me was the train running overhead on the roads, with cars honking as police/ambulance sirens were going off. I am not unfamiliar to the three different sets of noise, but put together in constancy drove me to the edge and I actually did get a literal headache.
This got me thinking: is there any direct correlation between noise levels with the level of happiness of an individual? I was pretty sure some time ago, I came across a video on social media that talked about the actual volume of noise that we live with everyday and how that subliminally affects our livelihood.
Let me see if I can find it… Though, before I link the video below, I would like to chat about some of my thoughts on the effects of noise pollution on our wellbeing.
I am pretty sure if I lived in New York long-term, eventually my eardrums (and being) would become more accustomed to the noise, however I doubt that is any good.
I definitely do believe that noise pollution can cause immense physical and mental stress. How could a person’s brain rest when they’re constantly receiving so much signals and noise, let alone think clearly? You can’t expect the glass of water to be clear and see-through when you’re constantly shaking the table.
I’m pretty sure the constant (loud) noise is not good for your eardrums either, literally physically.
Even if I were to listen to music whilst going about my daily errands, I am pretty sure the constant music being played into our ears (Admit it, you’ve had your volumes switched on beyond the recommended volume level too to block out noise), it would also disintegrate our hearing.
We are so used to noises in the big cities that silence sometimes feels ‘overwhelming’ - you know, that feeling when you’re camping or out amongst the great nature, the silence feels as though it is filling up your lungs and head space…
I’d propose that everyday, we find a couple of minutes of silence DURING the day. As a signal to your mind to re-calibrate and re-adjust. Call it a ‘mindcare’ routine (like skincare, get it?) where you’d find moments of silence to allow for your mindspace and thoughts to be clear again.
Perhaps we will then listen better, notice better and even live better.
Watch this really interesting short video about noise and hearing by Vox:
Thank you for reading.
Have you taken the time out today to reduce the noise surrounding you? What are some of your favourite places/things you do to experience some peace? Comment below and let me know.
We should start a #silentsanctuary for ourselves in our daily lives.
Tweet or tag me on Instagram with #silentsanctuary to share some of the noiseless, peaceful surroundings you engage with regularly.
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