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Noisy environment, can training be done? (Read 1457 times)

Offline ranniks

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Noisy environment, can training be done?
« on: April 28, 2014, 11:02:52 AM »
My ears are sensitive. And thus I can only read properly when it's absolutely quiet.

Thing is that our wals arent all that strong and so when my father has the tv on I can hear it if the tv is too loud. I can also hear my dad speaking when he's on the phone. As well as hearing my sisters friends (she's 6 years younger than me) chattering around in her room. Sometimes it really frustrates me and because of it I can't get my reading done.

Once I was in the library. They have 2 piano rooms there. Each room is closed of from the other by a wall and glass. The pianos are acoustic with silent system. When I played for a while a person came in the other room. Even though I had the headphones in from the silent system, I could hear his keys going down. In the library you can't play without the silent system. Because I could hear his keys going down while he practised as I practised myself, I could not concentrate.

Is there a way to counter this? It would help me to be able to shut off all noises by mind alone.

I already use earphones ear-silencing headphones, you name it. I've tried most of it. But if there is a way to train to become immune to noise, please tell me.

Is it just grabbing a book and trying to read in a busy environment each day?

Offline timothy42b

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Re: Noisy environment, can training be done?
«Reply #1 on: April 28, 2014, 12:13:37 PM »
But if there is a way to train to become immune to noise, please tell me.

Is it just grabbing a book and trying to read in a busy environment each day?

That depends on the cause.  Do you have other symptoms?

People on the Asperger's or mild autism spectrum show differences in 3 main areas:
1.  Insensitivity to social cues
2.  Deficit in executive function
3.  Reactions to sensory input like noise, smell, touch. 
Tim

Offline faa2010

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Re: Noisy environment, can training be done?
«Reply #2 on: April 28, 2014, 02:30:00 PM »
That depends on the cause.  Do you have other symptoms?

People on the Asperger's or mild autism spectrum show differences in 3 main areas:
1.  Insensitivity to social cues
2.  Deficit in executive function
3.  Reactions to sensory input like noise, smell, touch. 

Wow, I don't have autism, but you mention the issues I have while I practice:
1.  Insensitivity to social cues -> vocal tone and proximity
2.  Deficit in executive function -> Can get easily distracted, and if the keys have dust or another particles ...
3.  Reactions to sensory input like noise, smell, touch -> Please don't mention it.

Turning on the TV is a double-edged sword in my case, because I can relax, but if there is something "good", I stop practicing and watch it instead.

Hey ranniks, are you a lark/owl while your family is the opposite?, if that's the case, then use it to your favor.

Also you can use the distractions to your favor, so in the future you can be more invulnerable to distractions. Eg.  During a concert, if a child is crying or some kids are not paying attention, or if someone arrives or goes during your playing, you concentration couldn't break.

There are other things one has to deal with during a recital, a presentation,  an exam, or a concert, and having distractions couldn't be bad at all if you use them to your favor. ;)

Well, that's my point of view.

Offline awesom_o

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Re: Noisy environment, can training be done?
«Reply #3 on: April 28, 2014, 03:43:51 PM »
My ears are sensitive. And thus I can only read properly when it's absolutely quiet.



I'm sorry. This doesn't make any sense. If you can read properly when it's quiet, you can read properly when there is distracting noise. Perhaps you can't read as properly as you think you can? (How do you know you read properly in the first place, if you don't mind my asking?)

My ears are also sensitive-probably at least as sensitive as yours! The sensitivity of my hearing actually makes it easier for me to read when there is noise around! Focus on what you are doing, not on external noise that is beyond your control!

Offline timothy42b

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Re: Noisy environment, can training be done?
«Reply #4 on: April 28, 2014, 03:57:04 PM »
?)

My ears are also sensitive-probably at least as sensitive as yours! The sensitivity of my hearing actually makes it easier for me to read when there is noise around! Focus on what you are doing, not on external noise that is beyond your control!

You're not using the word the same way.

You are a neurotypical and for you sensitivity means how soft a sound you can detect.

He is not, and for him sensitivity means what type of sound his system can tolerate.  Even a mild sound can be intolerable for some of us.  In my case, I can't handle simultaneous conversations.  It is physically painful.  But I can follow the voices of a fugue, go figure.  One of my children can't touch raw meat or lettuce.  She can eat hamburgers and salad with no problem but is unable to prepare them.  Think of fingernails on a chalkboard, magnified.  For some people no problem, for others agony. 
Tim

Offline ranniks

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Re: Noisy environment, can training be done?
«Reply #5 on: April 28, 2014, 04:11:16 PM »
Hey ranniks, are you a lark/owl while your family is the opposite?, if that's the case, then use it to your favor.

Also you can use the distractions to your favor, so in the future you can be more invulnerable to distractions. Eg.  During a concert, if a child is crying or some kids are not paying attention, or if someone arrives or goes during your playing, you concentration couldn't break.

There are other things one has to deal with during a recital, a presentation,  an exam, or a concert, and having distractions couldn't be bad at all if you use them to your favor. ;)

Well, that's my point of view.

I can be a night owl, but it's not good for me because the next day I'll either wake up in the afternoon or I'll be too sleepy.

I'm sorry. This doesn't make any sense. If you can read properly when it's quiet, you can read properly when there is distracting noise. Perhaps you can't read as properly as you think you can? (How do you know you read properly in the first place, if you don't mind my asking?)

My ears are also sensitive-probably at least as sensitive as yours! The sensitivity of my hearing actually makes it easier for me to read when there is noise around! Focus on what you are doing, not on external noise that is beyond your control!

My wording might not have been very precise, but what I mean is that when it's quiet I can read very efficiently. When It's noisy the efficiency at which I read goes down.

You're not using the word the same way.

You are a neurotypical and for you sensitivity means how soft a sound you can detect.

He is not, and for him sensitivity means what type of sound his system can tolerate.  Even a mild sound can be intolerable for some of us.  In my case, I can't handle simultaneous conversations.  It is physically painful.  But I can follow the voices of a fugue, go figure.  One of my children can't touch raw meat or lettuce.  She can eat hamburgers and salad with no problem but is unable to prepare them.  Think of fingernails on a chalkboard, magnified.  For some people no problem, for others agony.  

That's what I mean. :)

When someone for example drinks tea/coffee and 'slurps' or makes 'that' noise people make when drinking coffee, I feel very uncomfortable. The same goes for chewing noises and the way food goes down your throat. That sound makes me uncomfortable.


Offline awesom_o

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Re: Noisy environment, can training be done?
«Reply #6 on: April 28, 2014, 04:16:13 PM »
If you can only practice in a 100% soundproof environment, you have two options:

1. Be very wealthy, and build yourself a 100% soundproof practice chamber.

2. Develop better concentration, so that you can practice in an ordinary practice room, like an ordinary piano student. Yes, there might be somebody practicing in the practice room beside you if you are at a Conservatory, or if you are at home, there COULD be someone doing the dishes or watching TV in the next room!

I think if you really love music enough, you will learn to cope with such mild distractions.  :)

Personally, I love to practice cello while watching TV. It's great for my multi-tasking and mental concentration. Of course, I do plenty of practicing in ordinary conditions, with the music in front of me and relative quiet in the room. But when I really want to test myself and see if I really know something well by memory, I'll play it in a distracted environment. I think being able to play in a focused manner despite having distractions going on around you is a beneficial and healthy way to train.

Offline awesom_o

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Re: Noisy environment, can training be done?
«Reply #7 on: April 28, 2014, 04:18:25 PM »

My wording might not have been very precise, but what I mean is that when it's quiet I can read very efficiently. When It's noisy the efficiency at which I read goes down.



That's quite normal! Always as artists, we are seeking to improve our efficiency in every regard as much as possible. Try and increase your tolerance slowly but surely! The more involved and aware of what you are doing you become, the more noise you will be able to work efficiently in!

Offline ranniks

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Re: Noisy environment, can training be done?
«Reply #8 on: April 28, 2014, 04:28:32 PM »
That's quite normal! Always as artists, we are seeking to improve our efficiency in every regard as much as possible. Try and increase your tolerance slowly but surely! The more involved and aware of what you are doing you become, the more noise you will be able to work efficiently in!

Yes, but in my case my efficiency goes down by a large margin. I lose concentration and am unable to continue.

Edit:

When I can't get the noise to stop, I put on 'shower' sound on youtube. Basically it's a recording of rain dropping or a shower. I shower everyday and because of that I don't lose my concentration while listening to that and studying. However, the efficiency is still lower than if the room was completely silent.

Offline awesom_o

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Re: Noisy environment, can training be done?
«Reply #9 on: April 28, 2014, 04:52:49 PM »
Yes, but in my case my efficiency goes down by a large margin. I lose concentration and am unable to continue.


But you are a student and live with your family. You can't expect total silence in the house just so that you can have optimal concentration!

Even if you are a big-name concert artist, you can't expect the audience to maintain total silence throughout your concert.

As a musician, you HAVE to learn how to work in sub-optimal conditions!

As a human being, you HAVE to learn how to cope with conditions that are not perfect!

If it is something like children's voices talking in the next room, a phone conversation of a parent, or the sound of a TV in another room... these are ordinary, everyday noises!

I could understand if it was a dog barking in the next room, or your mother and father screaming at each other, or something like that.... but children talking? The sound of another person's KEYS going down on a SILENT piano in ANOTHER practice room?

I don't mean to be rude, but in all honesty what kind of job do you expect to get to support yourself one day that will provide you with 100% silence to work in?

If you want to be a bus driver, the passengers of the bus will talk, and you will have to concentrate.
If you want to work in an office, other people will share the office with you, and they will have conversations, answer phone calls, etc. You will have to concentrate.  
If you want to be a school teacher, the students will chat among themselves while you are trying to teach, or there could be construction work going on outside of your classroom. You will have to concentrate.

My point is.... in no job will you simply be allowed to lose concentration and be unable to continue. This will result in you being fired.

If you take piano seriously as a profession, then you need to treat it a bit more like a regular job! Even if you do NOT take piano seriously as a profession: you still NEED to learn to cope with the sounds of daily life going on around you, without losing concentration.


 :)


Offline timothy42b

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Re: Noisy environment, can training be done?
«Reply #10 on: April 28, 2014, 05:02:33 PM »

If you take piano seriously as a profession, then you need to treat it a bit more like a regular job! Even if you do NOT take piano seriously as a profession: you still NEED to learn to cope with the sounds of daily life going on around you, without losing concentration.


 :)



It's easy to give advice, not so easy to understand how hard a task this can be.  (You would have to develop that skill, were you ever to take teaching seriously.)

We aren't all wired the same. 

For some of us, extraneous noises disappear when we concentrate.  For others, they remain but as a mere irritant, easily disregarded.  And for some of us they are overpowering.

There are probably strategies that help, I'm just not that familiar with them.  You might try reading Temple Grande (an autistic woman who's become a world famous designer) or Oliver Sacks (very readable books on neurological related topics).   
Tim

Offline awesom_o

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Re: Noisy environment, can training be done?
«Reply #11 on: April 28, 2014, 05:23:44 PM »
It's easy to give advice, not so easy to understand how hard a task this can be. 

No. I'm serious. If you live at home with your family, you can't expect them to all live in utter silence so you can practice. :)

If you simply cannot practice with the sounds of their lives going on around you, then you are SOL. Unless you are rich enough to afford your own house.

 ;D

Offline pianoman53

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Re: Noisy environment, can training be done?
«Reply #12 on: April 28, 2014, 07:28:04 PM »
_o:

How is it possible for you to, in almost everything you write, to be so extremely condescending and obnoxious? You clearly don't understand his condition enough!
Would you tell a kid with ADHD "If you just want it enough, you will be able to sit perfectly still for 20 minutes?" or a person with cancer "If you love life enough, it will go away :)".
And at the same time, you put yourself in a sort of martyr position with the "My ears are also sensitive, at least as sensitive as yours!"

How do you think you make people feel when you say things like that?
I'm sorry, but from what you have achieved, you're not yet in the position where you can be that rude, and get away with it.

There are many different people here, but you are the only one who can make me angry.

There has been countless of times where someone asks for help, and you come with an either sarcastic, or simply terribly mean answer.
How about you act a bit more humble, instead of being an internet bully?

Offline faulty_damper

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Re: Noisy environment, can training be done?
«Reply #13 on: April 28, 2014, 07:39:13 PM »
These are what I wear:

http://www.amazon.com/Peltor-97069-President-Hearing-Protector/dp/B0000X6L82/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1398713759&sr=8-1&keywords=president+hearing+protectors

I'm an HSP so I'm sensitive to everything, including sounds.  In order to improve concentration, I have to wear hearing protectors, a hat to block out the fluorescent lights, a jacket to keep me warm, and place myself into a corner.  Only then am I comfortable and am able to concentrate.

Ranniks, if you're and HSP, then you're in good company.  Awesom_o clearly isn't so he can't possibly understand.  ;)

Offline ranniks

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Re: Noisy environment, can training be done?
«Reply #14 on: April 28, 2014, 07:41:54 PM »
No. I'm serious. If you live at home with your family, you can't expect them to all live in utter silence so you can practice. :)

If you simply cannot practice with the sounds of their lives going on around you, then you are SOL. Unless you are rich enough to afford your own house.

 ;D

I never said utter silence, and if I did I meant only so that the noise does not enter my room. Our walls are not the best for sound blocking, but they are not that bad that utter silence is needed. The things that bother me are when the tv is too loud or when my sisters friends (who are in their 15s) come over and talk too loud. Or when my father/mother are talking on the phone too loudly.

And it's not like I havn't tried. I've tried studying in the library, all sorts of items to cancel noise and tried listening to music.

_o:

How is it possible for you to, in almost everything you write, to be so extremely condescending and obnoxious? You clearly don't understand his condition enough!
Would you tell a kid with ADHD "If you just want it enough, you will be able to sit perfectly still for 20 minutes?" or a person with cancer "If you love life enough, it will go away :)".
And at the same time, you put yourself in a sort of martyr position with the "My ears are also sensitive, at least as sensitive as yours!"

How do you think you make people feel when you say things like that?
I'm sorry, but from what you have achieved, you're not yet in the position where you can be that rude, and get away with it.

There are many different people here, but you are the only one who can make me angry.

There has been countless of times where someone asks for help, and you come with an either sarcastic, or simply terribly mean answer.
How about you act a bit more humble, instead of being an internet bully?


Thank you very much.

Offline ranniks

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Re: Noisy environment, can training be done?
«Reply #15 on: April 28, 2014, 07:48:31 PM »
These are what I wear:

http://www.amazon.com/Peltor-97069-President-Hearing-Protector/dp/B0000X6L82/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1398713759&sr=8-1&keywords=president+hearing+protectors

I'm an HSP so I'm sensitive to everything, including sounds.  In order to improve concentration, I have to wear hearing protectors, a hat to block out the fluorescent lights, a jacket to keep me warm, and place myself into a corner.  Only then am I comfortable and am able to concentrate.

Ranniks, if you're and HSP, then you're in good company.  Awesom_o clearly isn't so he can't possibly understand.  ;)

 :)

Thank you!

I use these:

http://www.gehoorbescherming.nu/picz/Silenta_SuperMax_36dB_Oorkap.jpg

I used to use them more frequently, but since I've started wearing glasses, they hurt after a while or feel uncomfortable.  Now I use these:

http://i1243.photobucket.com/albums/gg543/Jfoxie/oordoppen.jpg

Offline timothy42b

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Re: Noisy environment, can training be done?
«Reply #16 on: April 28, 2014, 07:57:44 PM »
Quote from: ranniks
:)



I used to use them more frequently, but since I've started wearing glasses, they hurt after a while or feel uncomfortable.  Now I use these:

http://i1243.photobucket.com/albums/gg543/Jfoxie/oordoppen.jpg


I use ones like those to mow the lawn or do other noisy tasks.

Once when I was babysitting a 2 year old things got very quiet.

I had fallen asleep on the carpet and she filled my ear with Playdough. 

I don't recommend this but it was effective. 
Tim

Offline faulty_damper

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Re: Noisy environment, can training be done?
«Reply #17 on: April 28, 2014, 08:01:11 PM »
:)

Thank you!

I use these:

http://www.gehoorbescherming.nu/picz/Silenta_SuperMax_36dB_Oorkap.jpg

I used to use them more frequently, but since I've started wearing glasses, they hurt after a while or feel uncomfortable.  Now I use these:

http://i1243.photobucket.com/albums/gg543/Jfoxie/oordoppen.jpg


Oh, yeah, I also wear glasses and after a while they get uncomfortable as it presses the temples into the sides of my head.  I can actually place the temples on the outside of the hearing cups, sort of.  I don't wear foam ear plugs because it collects too much ear wax.  :P

Offline ranniks

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Re: Noisy environment, can training be done?
«Reply #18 on: April 28, 2014, 08:03:57 PM »
I use ones like those to mow the lawn or do other noisy tasks.

Once when I was babysitting a 2 year old things got very quiet.

I had fallen asleep on the carpet and she filled my ear with Playdough.  

I don't recommend this but it was effective.  

They do help a lot!

There are earbuds that are made of a sort of wax/jelly. I have some in my drawer and they do feel good and they work to a certain extent.

But what do you think? Should I continue with how I'm trying to cope now or use other methods?

Offline faulty_damper

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Re: Noisy environment, can training be done?
«Reply #19 on: April 28, 2014, 10:04:09 PM »
The only thing that seems to have a noticeable effect is mindfulness/concentration practice.  What this means if you have to learn to suppress incoming stimuli so that the noise/distractions are ignored and not significantly registered in the mind.  This takes mental work and is difficult to achieve because it requires consistent practice over the period of a couple of weeks.

Offline awesom_o

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Re: Noisy environment, can training be done?
«Reply #20 on: April 29, 2014, 01:30:22 AM »
The only thing that seems to have a noticeable effect is mindfulness/concentration practice.  What this means if you have to learn to suppress incoming stimuli so that the noise/distractions are ignored and not significantly registered in the mind.  This takes mental work and is difficult to achieve because it requires consistent practice over the period of a couple of weeks.

+1!

Offline awesom_o

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Re: Noisy environment, can training be done?
«Reply #21 on: April 29, 2014, 01:33:25 AM »
_o:

 You clearly don't understand his condition enough!
Would you tell a kid with ADHD "If you just want it enough, you will be able to sit perfectly still for 20 minutes?"

I have ADHD myself ;D So I really do quite well with ADHD kids!

Offline pianoman53

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Re: Noisy environment, can training be done?
«Reply #22 on: April 29, 2014, 05:05:17 AM »
I have ADHD myself ;D So I really do quite well with ADHD kids!
Yeah, thanks. You clearly got my point.