After the Walkman, then the iPod, and now the iPhone, we’ve become a society of headphone wearers. And why not, when every song every published can be not only in your back pocket, but on your phone even. There’s so many excuses for having them – those obnoxious airplane-seat-mate-chatterboxes, close encounters with surly public transport rides, any noise to drown out the cacophony of the world around…

Unplug from the Matrix for a minute, would ya?

Unplug from the Matrix for a minute, would ya?

A few months ago the headphone jack on my iPhone broke. It’s an old 3GS phone, so really it is due for an upgrade, but I’m holding out for the iPhone5 so I can get a deal on the 4s (I always buy unlocked, so I wait for a good deal.)

It’s been interesting to return from headphones-on-immediately-out-the-door to just walking around with, ya know, hearing au naturel.

I find my brain has a little more space to run free. Noticing the details around me more, I find myself more creative without all that in-ear over-stimulation.

Challenge: If you’re a headphones-always wearer, go au naturel for one day. Or a week. See what you notice.

(You can still protect yourself from those obnoxious chatterboxes by putting on the headphones and just not turning them on. It works, I’ve tested it!)