Turning Down the Noise Author Christine Jackman on Ways to Find Peace

Turning Down the Noise Author Christine Jackman on Ways to Find Peace

What inspired the idea behind this book?

I had achieved what looked like the “perfect life”: a highly-paid executive job with lots of travel, a house in a suburb on Sydney Harbour, a loving partner and two healthy kids. But I just felt sick and exhausted all the time. One day when my partner asked me to describe the feeling, I said it was like somebody had turned up the volume in my life to 11 out of 10 – and then broken the volume control so it was stuck there!

What was the research process like for the book?

I’ve worked for most of my life as a journalist so when I decided to write a book about turning down the digital and external noise in my life, I was determined it wasn’t just going to be a personal journey. I wanted to find out what the medical and scientific research had to say about the physiological and psychological effects of noise. Conversely, I wanted to know whether there was any scientific evidence to show that quiet practices and places could have a positive impact on us. I spoke to a lot of experts and read a lot of research papers! But I was also my own guinea pig. I stayed with monks, went on a 10 day silent meditation retreat, and hiked to one of the quietest places in the USA, and explored other ways to turn down the noise.

 If I looked at your internet history, what would it reveal about you?

That I am a political and news junkie and a compulsive researcher! Once I am interested in a topic, I want to find everything that has ever been written or said about it. The Internet can be my best friend but also my worst enemy: a constant source of digital noise.

What are you hoping the reader will take away from reading your book?

That if they are feeling stressed, anxious or overwhelmed, there might be a good reason for it: there has never been a noisier time for human beings to live, and our brains don’t like it! The good news is, there are simple ways to turn down the noise in your life. Most of them don’t cost a cent; you don’t need to wear lycra; and you can do many of them in your own home. What’s not to love?!

How does it feel to hold your book in your hands?

I absolutely love what Murdoch Books did with this book!  It still fills me with joy. Somehow they managed to capture the spirit of my quest for quiet in the cover design: it is multi-dimensional and has to be held and felt to really be understood.

Does the creative process get easier for you with each book?

As a journalist, I have spent most of my adult working life writing so it should be a cinch by now! I’ve also previously written a political book (Inside Kevin07) under an extremely tight deadline. But I was surprised by how vulnerable I felt with Turning Down the Noise. In many ways it was a completely different creative process. I realised very early that I could not explore this topic at arm’s length, like a journalist. I had to live it. That was confronting and still is. But I hope that by admitting my own flaws and fears, I might help people who might also be feeling overwhelmed by the noise of the modern world.

If you could give one piece of advice to aspiring writers, what would it be?

Writing a book is like eating an elephant. The only way to do it is one bite at a time! Seriously, at some point you simply have to face the blank page or screen and start putting words on it. Good luck!!

 

Reviews

Bring Some Silence Into Your Life: Try an Extract From Christine Jackman's Turning Down the Noise

Review | Extract

16 September 2020

Bring Some Silence Into Your Life: Try an Extract From Christine Jackman's Turning Down the Noise

    Christine Jackman's Turning Down the Noise is Essential Reading in a Busy World

    Review | Our Review

    14 September 2020

    Christine Jackman's Turning Down the Noise is Essential Reading in a Busy World

      Synopsis

      Through her personal quest for a better way of being, author and respected journalist Christine Jackman seeks out the best ways to regain clarity and peace of mind in a busy and noisy world.Author Christine Jackman knew her life looked successful - an executive position in Sydney, a house in a harbourside suburb, meetings with CEOs and phone calls with government ministers - but it didn't feel that way. Inside, she felt constantly off balance, her thoughts and internal compass - as well as her ability to care for the people she loved most - drowned out by the noise in her life.So Jackman embarked on a quest for a better way of being. Turning Down the Noise follows her journey as she explores what is happening to our brains, our lives and our communities as we navigate a never-ending assault on our senses and attention, whether from actual noise, exposure to media or the pings and alerts on our phones. More importantly, she reveals how we can reverse the damage through simple daily acts designed to strip out the stimuli and reclaim the silence.Seeking ways to channel and capture the clarity and peace of mind so often lacking in our lives, Jackman writes with a lightness of touch, sharing her own experiences and digging into her subject with the zeal of an investigative journalist and an enquiring mind.
      Christine Jackman
      About the author

      Christine Jackman

      Christine Jackman began her career as a journalist with The Courier-Mail in Brisbane, Australia, in 1993. She has worked in New York as a foreign correspondent for NewsCorp, in the Canberra press gallery and as the social issues writer for The Australian. After several years as an award-winning staff writer for The Weekend Australian Magazine, Christine embraced freelance journalism, with features published in Good Weekend, Vogue and The Australian Women's Weekly. She is also a communications consultant.

      Books by Christine Jackman

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