On Danish Radio


Working in silence is depressing (and unproductive).  Especially when in a noiseless, aseptic library.  The white walls gleam menacingly.  Every pencil mark left on the plastic table from previous manic study sticks out, a threat of imperfection.  We all have our own toxic work environment.  It could be the hush of your desk at home.  Perhaps you find your office suffocating; with fellow employees mechanically clicking at their keyboards.  We shouldn’t have to despise where we work.

And that’s how I discovered Danish radio.  I was working staring at my computer at home in NYC in an intimidatingly silent living room.  My parents were out at breakfast and my mind could only think of what else I could be doing besides outlining an essay.  I needed some mental noise and Danish radio appeared.

You can listen to delightfully eclectic playlists filled with ‘recent’ pop music on P7.  MAMA probably means something besides the obvious, but I’ve no idea what it would be (though they do seem to play something akin to electronica).  You can listen to general talk shows on P1 and P2.  The language is such that your mind doesn’t fix on the meaning, rather it allows the words to pass through, some background noise to keep you company.

The best thing about Danish Radio is that, for me, it doesn’t exist beyond  work and study.  I’m not going to tune in just because.  I’m not going to go into a store and hear it playing.  When I put on P6 Formiddagen på p6 BEAT, I know that I’m working in the morning.  Nothing less, nothing more.  Danish Radio helps me find a productive mental space by providing concentrated distraction.  There’s no question as to what I should be doing when it plays.

Even the sterile library, with its precariously sorted books feels more like home when I can listen to Poker Face followed by a country song.  Now, let’s get working, positively.

How do you create a positive work environment for yourself?


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