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Headphones: How Far The Gender Gap Can Go

Headphones: How Far The Gender Gap Can Go

Headphones. The first thing you can think of when you say this word is high tech news and gadgets, but Generation Y made these items more than just some tech devices. How? What do you do when you start your commute? Put on the headphones! Then you keep them on when you arrive to work, in order to maximize your productivity listening to music, and you will be keeping them on to avoid random contact on your commute back home.

Even if you are not the music addict I am, you probably use headphones pretty frequently. Most people use them to get into the groove at the gym, at least.

The headphone rage

The increased usage of the headphones gave entrepreneurs a new niche to tap into: fashionable headphones! Just a couple of years ago, these items were simple and plain, now you can buy a fashionable pair of Dolce Gabbana crown headphones, which you might remember from Riri’s post. If that’s not your style, you can opt for more discreet, yet very modern and stylish headphones by designer Alexander Wang, brought to you by Beats.

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Beats is not the only company which is now asking famous designers to work their magic on headphones. This trend led to “girly”, jewelry-like headphones manufactured just for women to compliment their earrings and hairstyles. Now you are not only looking for the best wireless earbuds, but also for earbuds that match your iPhone shade, because you’re buying them to accessorize your running outfit. After all, running in a matching outfit is far more important than listening to the right tune (not that anyone said this or ever will).

Women-only headphones

The trend of manufacturing headphones especially for women was taken to the extremes not only by designers who are now selling four figure couture headphones, but also by companies which advertise their headphones as scientifically designed for female needs. According to Skullcandy’s brand director, women’s ears are configured differently, compared to men’s ears; thus, we need special headphones.

Is this legit? My efforts to find a study which can support Skullcandy’s statements left me empty-handed, so I can’t say if they are right or not, but the idea that unisex headphones are not practical seems a little far-fetched to me. Maybe it’s just me, but maybe I just managed to sniff out the marketing efforts of the companies which try to sell us pricier headphones.

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Oh, what happened with the traditional headphones and earbuds?

A potential answer for this question is “they turned into fashion statement items” because the gender gap is growing larger and larger, but millennial fashionistas found another use for them in the hair styling department. After all, what can you expect, after Vogue called headphones the “Summer’s Ultimate Accessory”?

Headphones, the latest hair styling tool?

Let’s leave the best headphones apart for some moments and focus on your hair, on those last days of the week, when your strands are so rich in dry shampoo, you feel you could support the entire dry shampoo industry on your own. On those days, when washing your hair is just too much for you, the headphones are your best friend in styling your tresses.

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I haven’t tested this method yet, but I think it’s safe enough to say that it may work, especially when you want to listen to music and style your dirty hair before going to work.

Conclusion

As we live a high tech life, the attempt to get some style from our gadgets is completely legit, but from choosing a pair of stylish headphones over the plain white ones that can be seen from a mile away, to spending thousands of dollars on Gabbana or Alexander Wang is going too far. Way too far for me.

I totally agree with the need to buy your phone in an elegant shade of rose, but women-only headphones? I think I’ll pass. My unisex headphones are completely able to help me style my hair!

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Featured photo credit: Frends via google.ro

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Last Updated on March 13, 2019

How to Get out of a Rut: 12 Useful Ways to Get Unstuck

How to Get out of a Rut: 12 Useful Ways to Get Unstuck

Have you gotten into a rut before? Or are you in a rut right now?

You know you’re in a rut when you run out of ideas and inspiration. I personally see a rut as a productivity vacuum. It might very well be a reason why you aren’t getting results. Even as you spend more time on your work, you can’t seem to get anything constructive done. While I’m normally productive, I get into occasional ruts (especially when I’ve been working back-to-back without rest). During those times, I can spend an entire day in front of the computer and get nothing done. It can be quite frustrating.

Over time, I have tried and found several methods that are helpful to pull me out of a rut. If you experience ruts too, whether as a working professional, a writer, a blogger, a student or other work, you will find these useful. Here are 12 of my personal tips to get out of ruts:

1. Work on the small tasks.

When you are in a rut, tackle it by starting small. Clear away your smaller tasks which have been piling up. Reply to your emails, organize your documents, declutter your work space, and reply to private messages.

Whenever I finish doing that, I generate a positive momentum which I bring forward to my work.

2. Take a break from your work desk.

Get yourself away from your desk and go take a walk. Go to the washroom, walk around the office, go out and get a snack.

Your mind is too bogged down and needs some airing. Sometimes I get new ideas right after I walk away from my computer.

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3. Upgrade yourself

Take the down time to upgrade yourself. Go to a seminar. Read up on new materials (#7). Pick up a new language. Or any of the 42 ways here to improve yourself.

The modern computer uses different typefaces because Steve Jobs dropped in on a calligraphy class back in college. How’s that for inspiration?

4. Talk to a friend.

Talk to someone and get your mind off work for a while.

Talk about anything, from casual chatting to a deep conversation about something you really care about. You will be surprised at how the short encounter can be rejuvenating in its own way.

5. Forget about trying to be perfect.

If you are in a rut, the last thing you want to do is step on your own toes with perfectionist tendencies.

Just start small. Do what you can, at your own pace. Let yourself make mistakes.

Soon, a little trickle of inspiration will come. And then it’ll build up with more trickles. Before you know it, you have a whole stream of ideas.

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6. Paint a vision to work towards.

If you are continuously getting in a rut with your work, maybe there’s no vision inspiring you to move forward.

Think about why you are doing this, and what you are doing it for. What is the end vision in mind?

Make it as vivid as possible. Make sure it’s a vision that inspires you and use that to trigger you to action.

7. Read a book (or blog).

The things we read are like food to our brain. If you are out of ideas, it’s time to feed your brain with great materials.

Here’s a list of 40 books you can start off with. Stock your browser with only the feeds of high quality blogs, such as Lifehack.org, DumbLittleMan, Seth Godin’s Blog, Tim Ferris’ Blog, Zen Habits or The Personal Excellence Blog.

Check out the best selling books; those are generally packed with great wisdom.

8. Have a quick nap.

If you are at home, take a quick nap for about 20-30 minutes. This clears up your mind and gives you a quick boost. Nothing quite like starting off on a fresh start after catching up on sleep.

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9. Remember why you are doing this.

Sometimes we lose sight of why we do what we do, and after a while we become jaded. A quick refresher on why you even started on this project will help.

What were you thinking when you thought of doing this? Retrace your thoughts back to that moment. Recall why you are doing this. Then reconnect with your muse.

10. Find some competition.

Nothing quite like healthy competition to spur us forward. If you are out of ideas, then check up on what people are doing in your space.

Colleagues at work, competitors in the industry, competitors’ products and websites, networking conventions.. you get the drill.

11. Go exercise.

Since you are not making headway at work, might as well spend the time shaping yourself up.

Sometimes we work so much that we neglect our health and fitness. Go jog, swim, cycle, whichever exercise you prefer.

As you improve your physical health, your mental health will improve, too. The different facets of ourselves are all interlinked.

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Here’re 15 Tips to Restart the Exercise Habit (and How to Keep It).

12. Take a good break.

Ruts are usually signs that you have been working too long and too hard. It’s time to get a break.

Beyond the quick tips above, arrange for a 1-day or 2-days of break from your work. Don’t check your (work) emails or do anything work-related. Relax and do your favorite activities. You will return to your work recharged and ready to start.

Contrary to popular belief, the world will not end from taking a break from your work. In fact, you will be much more ready to make an impact after proper rest. My best ideas and inspiration always hit me whenever I’m away from my work.

Take a look at this to learn the importance of rest: The Importance of Scheduling Downtime

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Featured photo credit: Joshua Earle via unsplash.com

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