Quiet Please

Latest posts

What is noise pollution and what can you do about it?

Stop for a minute. Turn off the TV. Take off your headphones. What do you hear? If you hear nothing but natural sounds — birds, water, bees buzzing, then you’re either very lucky or your brain is doing its utmost not to hear the everyday noise of the human-made world. And our brains are very…

Why you need to just listen

From noise-cancelling headphones that block out noise to soundbars that turn our TVs into mini cinemas, everything we do seems to take away our ability to just listen to what’s around us. I’m as guilty as anyone. Too much noise in the world? I pop on my Bose headphones and the white noise takes it…

Notifications and alarms – why it’s time to silence your digital world

Back in the late 1980s, my Nan bought a Grandfather clock for my Grandad. And my grandad was delighted. He set it up and we all waited patiently for the next hour to arrive. Ding-dong-ding-dong it went. We all clapped enthusiastically. Fast-forward a couple of days and the once novel chimes were driving us to…

What does tinnitus sound like?

EEEEEEEeeeeeeeeeEEEeeeeeeeeeeEEEEEEEEEeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeee. Annoying right? Welcome to the world of my tinnitus. But surely all tinnitus is the same? A ringing sound in the ears. Yes, I thought the same when I was first diagnosed — I assumed that I heard what everyone with tinnitus heard. Hang on a minute, what is tinnitus? Tinnitus is a sound…

My first soundwalk – it didn’t go quite as planned

Rustling, shimmying, arrrgggghhhhhhh. Those are the sounds from my first soundwalk. I’ve got it on video on my phone. A close-up of a spider’s web, light green leaves waving in the background, then something swoops from behind me heading out to the light, the video takes a dramatic arc to the right, a squeal from…

How going on a silent retreat stopped me farting

I had many expectations about going on a silent retreat. Some realistic (finding some quiet space and alone time), some not so much (writing a novel in five nights and six days). What I didn’t expect was the effect of a massive drop in anxiety and stress levels — less farting. I’ve had Irritable Bowel…

The joy of walking barefoot

Indoors finally got to me. My germaphobe and introvert side lost the battle. My garden is a sanctuary, but I needed to see different shades of green, and yellow and brown. Westonbirt, the national arboretum seemed a good choice – far enough away to have an air of having to travel, but close enough that…

Blackbird on a branch with its beak open.

Why listening to birds is good for your health

“Shag me, shag me, shag me.” After weeks of hearing a Great Tit scream this from the tree outside my bedroom, I was ready to sign him up to bird Tinder. OK, so I’m not a bird whisperer, and he might have been saying “Oi lazy, the feeder’s empty.” But it was that time of…

There’s no such thing as silence

For the last year, I’ve been searching for silence, often with less than perfect outcomes. I’ve become increasingly anxious with all the manmade sounds that surround me and felt a need to immerse myself in a silent world. But, then I realised unless I go and live in an anechoic chamber, there’s no such thing as…

“You cannot wait for it to get quiet… You must create your own silence.”

Erling Kagge Silence in the Age of Noise

Creative Quiet

The joy of walking barefoot

Indoors finally got to me. My germaphobe and introvert side lost the battle. My garden is a sanctuary, but I needed to see different shades of green, and yellow and brown. Westonbirt, the national arboretum seemed a good choice – far enough away to have an air of having to travel, but close enough that…


Travel Quiet

A half open hotel door with a do not disturb sign on the handle

Travelling in peace, or the search for a silent minibar

So, hands up, who can’t wait to book their next holiday? At this point even a night away from home would be amazing! Many of us have had to cancel trips this year and looking at the travel advice updates there isn’t a lot of certainty about when and where we will be able to…


Traffic, drills, loud zoom calls. Today is a day for noise cancelling headphones and watery white noise.