Audio stress management tools


soothing sounds provide solace

This month we are working through a variety of strategies  to help build your reliance to stress, and to manage your workplace stress levels. Your sense of sound is a powerful one; and with some thoughtful strategies, you can use that to help reduce the stress you feel at work.

We have looked at using ambient noise as a strategy for helping you to be more focused and effective at work.Building on that now gives you some tools to specifically feel more relaxed as you listen. Everyone has different preferences, so what makes you feel calm might irritate other people in your office. So use headphones if you need to keep things quiet, but try to build in some time to listen to soothing sounds when things start to build up at work

One tool you might enjoy is the website Noisli. “Noisli is here to make you more focused and boost your productivity. A background noise generator that helps you drown out annoying noises and that lets you create your perfect environment for working and relaxing. You can mix different sounds and create your perfect sound environment tailored to your personal need and taste.” I enjoy mixing in ocean waves, crackling fire, and just a hint of wind. Noisli can be used on your computer, or with an app on your phone. You can also enjoy the changing colors on the background, if you are watching the site.

Our next tool might make you too relaxed to worry about work at all! The website lets you select from a variety of different background noises for stress management, including Tropical Beach, Relaxing Fireplace, Wonderful Chillout, and – in a selection apparently designed for library people – Relaxed Cat. With this site, you get a full screen view of the noise creation device. So listening to the Relaxed Cat purring also give you a looped video of her resting in front of a fireplace and nearly dropping in a nap.

Does being around other people help you to relax and focus on your work? It can be surprisingly helpful to have background noise, without the specifics of hearing words. Coffitivity helps you with that. It is available on your desktop, or with a phone app. “Coffitivity recreates the ambient noises of a cafe to boost your creativity and help you work better. Supported by science and backed by a community of creative people using the app every day, Coffitivity is the perfect addition to your workday arsenal!” I enjoy using the app with the Lunchtime Lounge background noise: there is enough happening with dishes moving and conversations happening around the restaurant that silence is not driving me batty, but you can not actually make out any words spoken so there is nothing to break into your concentration. Stress reduction and increased concentration – a potent combination for work!

And of course your music apps of all sorts probably have a Relaxation station to enjoy. Check out Pandora, Spotify, Amazon, or other music sources to explore something new that might help you to feel focused and relaxed when things get too stressful at work!

Do you have any sounds that help you to feel stress melting away? Share them in the comments below so we can all try them out!