Have you ever tried working with ambient noise in the background? Did it help make you more effective, or did you find it distracting or stressful? Personally, I’ve never tried specifically ambient noise, although music definitely helps my productivity and mood. But an article from Book Riot “Immerse Yourself Into the Harry Potter World with Harry Potter Ambient Sounds” got my attention (for obvious reasons) and I decided to give it a try!
The article directs you to AmbientMixer.com which features a huge selection of free ambient sounds and even lets you create your own, or make adjustments to existing sounds. After sampling different options like “Storm on the Hogwarts Express” and “Autumn Forest” I ended up listening to “Hufflepuff Common Room” the longest. I liked the combination of birds chirping, the sound of a pen scratching, and the faint purr of a cat in the background.
For all you fellow nerds out there, it’s not just Harry Potter ambient sounds that are available – they have Doctor Who, Game of Thrones, and Lord of the Rings!
This article from Brainscape talks more about the “ideal noise level” for being more productive (they relate it to studying, but it could be applied to other tasks too) and gives some suggestions on the type of noise that could be helpful based on the task you are performing. If you really want to get in-depth, check out this article from Scientific American, which suggests that background noise may actually have a negative impact on brain functioning, and impair learning and memory.
At CMLE, classical music tends to keep us focused and uplifted. Check out YourClassical.org which features special playlists for relaxation, inspiration, and more! Or, if you prefer white noise, check out the site Noisli for different sounds options.
What do you think? Do you like to work or learn in complete silence, with music, or with ambient sounds?