I’ve posted a lot recently about how I’ve ramped up my coach industry knowledge and skills by attending WBECS. What I haven’t shared (until now) is that I’m a big fan of mobile learning and I often listen to webinars and audiobooks outside of my usual office space. I am always looking for ways to make mobile learning easier.
Working on vacation is never something I recommend, so don’t do that (really, don’t do that). I totally support taking work out of the confines of the indoor office whenever you can though. Especially if you can find a place out in nature.
Being mindfully outside in nature has been proven to be so restorative that there has been a resurgence in the practice of ‘forest bathing’. This ancient form of meditation involves walks in natural settings to promote well-being and reduce stress. Here is a short clip from the Association of Nature and Forest Therapy that explains the concept.
Whenever I can, I build this type of meditation into my schedule. Being untethered from all my devices and out of touch with the office, fully present to my surroundings is a serious mood modifier.
At other times, I simply try to incorporate more exposure to nature into my work days. I accomplish this by doing much of my listening and learning outdoors, especially now that summer has arrived. For my own privacy and to avoid distracting others, I always use a headset. I’ve burned through a whole whack of wired earbuds over the years, mostly because I move around too much. Despite my best intentions, I never fail to snag the cord and yank out an earpiece. I do it again and again. It always takes me by surprise. My earbud collection is a mass of crimped and tangled cords with threadbare wires producing fuzzy connections.
And then I found these! The Bose SoundSport Free Truly Wireless Headphones. I’ll be perfectly honest…I LOVE THEM! I got them in orange so they’d be easy to find when I put them down. It’s also a handy way to let people know that I’m using headphones and may not be able to hear them. So, just on the chance that you are a mobile learner like me, I wanted to do a quick review for you.
What I love about these headphones most:
They are super easy to use. I downloaded the Bose app on my iPhone and they were synced and ready to use in only a few minutes. I was listening to an audiobook in less time than it would normally take me to untangle one of my corded sets.
They stay put in my ears. I generally listen to webinars sitting down so I can take notes. Audiobooks are another story. I almost always listen to these on the move. I’m not sure how it’s possible, but these things stay firmly in place no matter how much I wander. I never feel like they are getting loose or threatening to tumble out onto the trail. They’re snug and comfortable for the whole hike.
The sound is amazing. As I’ve already mentioned, I use these headphones for audiobooks and webinars most often. However, I have occasionally used them for listening to music and I have been super impressed with the quality of the sound. They’ve also been great when I am working in public spaces like coffee shops and airports where I frequently play an ambient sound track to block out the background noise.
They recharge in their case. This is one of my favourite features. When I am finished using them, I just place them in their rechargeable case and they are all ready and charged the next time I use them. Indicator lights on the front of the case tell me the charge level so I know when to plug it in.
They are sweat and weather resistant. I’ll admit I don’t do the heavy-duty workouts I once did when I taught aerobics or tackled the Great Bermuda Walking Marathon, so the sweat-proof feature is not too important. But, I have been known to get caught in the rain and I do lots of my mobile learning poolside, so knowing these devices can take a little water is a relief.
They’re tough to lose. Get this… I can track them using the Bose phone app. No more where-the-heck-did-I-leave-my-headphones-has-anyone-seen-my-headphones-who-stole-my-headphones moments. I can find them wherever I set them down. Yay!
What I don’t love quite as much:
They’re pricey. At a whopping $249 Canadian, they are more expensive than any of the little wired earbud sets I have purchased over the years. Although I’ve probably spent at least that replacing lost and broken sets over time.
They’re a bit bigger than I expected. Since they are a bit larger than most of the earpieces I have used in the past and they sit outside of each ear, it’s taken me a bit of time to get used to the way they look on my head. Wired earbuds are a bit more subtle.
These headphones have made a big difference to my mobile learning options. I do my learning outside as much as I can, especially now that we’re right in the middle of our short Canadian summer. When I just have to get away from my desk, I can be lounging in my backyard hammock listening to a webinar, jotting notes and sipping lemonade in five minutes flat. Sounds pretty awesome, doesn’t it?
The WBECS online summit will be starting soon and I have my equipment at the ready! I’ll be mobile learning. How about you? There’s still time to register!
Author: Cathy Shaughnessy
Cathy Shaughnessy is a PRISM award winning ICF Master Certified Coach and author of the book series The Really Competent Coach. Cathy coaches senior leaders, mentors credentialed coaches, trains fledgling coaches and helps organizations build strong coaching cultures.
Download the Free Easy Tracking Form for Coaches and get tools and resources from Cathy!