Positivity is the First Step to Empowerment

Noise complaints can be slow to resolve. Be persistent.

Positive Thinking = Empowerment

Enough is enough; you’ve decided to tackle your problem neighbour who, has so far, been completely unresponsive to any polite request you’ve made. You are ready to put your head above the parapet and have decided to call in the authorities.

Here follows a few tips explaining why remaining positive and retaining a focus on your end goal will make the path a smoother one.


Take responsibility for your problem and control from the onset. There are no magic noise wands or sound fairies. Noise enforcers rely on you to provide the bulk of the evidence and will expect you to check in at key stages. Ask questions and inform yourself about the process from the onset.


Consider changing your routine during noise incidents. Instead of getting frustrated and becoming angry with the situation (or process) allow what is happening to happen and shift your energy to something else (this may need to be pre-planned). A rising temper and adrenaline will do nothing to help resolve the situation and will just affect the duration and intensity of your sleep; leaving you tired and unproductive.

You could also try changing your sleep pattern to fit in with the noise, for example, go to bed earlier. Anything that enables you to maintain a longer duration of quality sleep should be considered.

Now you may ask: Why should I have to change my mindset or lifestyle to fit in around this inconsiderate neighbour? The short answer is to say that you are right. You shouldn’t have to change anything you do; none of this is your fault and the noise maker is the one in the wrong. One consequence to this response though, is that all the power and control now reverts to the noise maker.


Most people see keeping noise logs or diaries as an unnecessary pain. The fact of the matter is that, those people who fail to follow procedures, ultimately, fail to get their issue resolved satisfactorily.

I spoke to someone the other day who said that she rewards herself every time she completed a diary entry. Of course, it would be patronising of us to suggest you do the same but I mention it as an example of how a positive attitude can lead to productivity.

Make recording evidence your routine and do it well; every incident is a step nearer to your goal.


Pause and regroup; particularly after noise incidents. Access to, and the strength of, your social ties are linked to well-being. Whether it be via the phone or facebook, talk to your friends and family and let them know how you are doing.

Keep in touch with your investigating officer at regular intervals – by phone (or, even better, in person) as well as by email. Demonstrating a positive and professional attitude will also help them progress your case. Remember, he may receive 500 noise complaints a year; familiarity can therefore act as a useful reminder.


Don’t give up on positive thinking. Persistence is the key to success and negativity can be counter-productive. Read more about the science of positive thinking.

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