If you have tinnitus, you’re probably familiar with the sound of humming, buzzing, whirring and tweeting in your ears, but have you learnt how to normalise it so that it doesn’t interfere with your happiness?
In this post, I’m going to share how I normalised my tinnitus.
So if you have a ringing in your ears that you can’t bear, or if you know somebody who does, this post is for you.
In The Beginning
When you suddenly get severe tinnitus, you may not be able to hear yourself think anymore. It interferes with the sounds inside your mind as well as the noises going on around you. You literally can’t escape your own head. And you can’t hear the silence anymore. Ever.
It’s hard to fathom that where there was once silence there’s now a screaming, whining, rushing or cricket-like noise in your head. I won’t say ‘in your ears’ because it rings around so much that it truly is in your head.
It can feel like pressure, and for some people, even pain in the ears.
If you’ve got tinnitus, you’ll know what I mean.
Our natural reaction, initially, is resistance.
I want this to go away. When will this noise stop? When will I be able to sleep in peace again? Why has this happened to me? What does it mean?
Why me? Why now? Why . . .?
All these questions run riot in our minds, because tinnitus often appears out of the blue, with no warning or logical explanation.
For some people, of course, they know the cause.
Perhaps they’ve been exposed to an explosion, worked with loud machinery for years, blasted their ears at one too many rock concerts, had Covid, or experienced some kind of emotional catalyst just before the onset.
But that isn’t always the case.
In my case, I got tinnitus when I had Covid and although I kept expecting it to, it never went away.
And if something is here to stay, the only way to happiness is to find a way to live in harmony with it.
Video of My Journey to Normalise Tinnitus
The Tinnitus Secret That Isn’t a Secret
If you’ve had tinnitus for years, chances are you already know this. But if you’re new to it, this may come as a surprise.
Tinnitus has a button that says, if you pay me attention, I will get exponentially louder.
So the moment we think about our tinnitus the volume turns up high. And because the volume is up high, we spend the whole day noticing it.
At face value, it may seem virtually impossible not to listen when you have a symphony of high-pitched ringing noises in various tones accompanied by a bunch of crickets or the wind rushing through your ears.
But the best way I’ve found to live a normal life has been to work on focus and mind control and to use intentional thinking plus the techniques I use in the post how to get a breakthrough in any area of life.
Because unless you’re lucky enough to have a complete cure (which I believe will be possible when we discover the key), this is 100% our best plan of attack.
And while you may hope ultimately for a cure, you choose acceptance along the way.
So keep reading if you’re interested in how I achieved peace despite the constant noise.
How To Retrain The Brain
Training the brain isn’t a one-task job. It’s multifaceted. Ask yourself a few questions before you begin.
How do I view my tinnitus? What’s my opinion of it? On a scale of 1-10, how much is it present in my day?
Make a note of your answers.
You want to get to the place where you can be neutral about it. It’s ‘just’ Tinnitus.
Now I’m betting that you would never say ‘just’ tinnitus, because it’s interfering with your life.
But by noticing that we’re giving it more power. So instead of saying it’s terrible, say it’s just tinnitus, to yourself I mean.
The thoughts we think have an impact on the emotions we feel.
So when we change our thoughts we change our feelings and the whole objective is to feel good despite the ringing in our ears. So let’s think of thoughts which can help make us feel better.
This isn’t the same as lying. This is about taking control. Being in charge. Stating that you are stronger than your Tinnitus.
Transforming our thoughts doesn’t happen overnight.
We have to change our beliefs before we can alter our thoughts, and to change our beliefs we have to change our experience. So how to do that?
Steps for Managing Tinnitus
- Visit your healthcare provider/doctor/ENT specialist to make sure there isn’t an underlying cause.
- Educate yourself about tinnitus – read, watch videos, and join support groups.
- Make a decision to take back control of your happiness.
- Use mindfulness exercises, meditation and self-hypnosis to train yourself to focus where you choose to focus (don’t aim for perfection, nobody has complete control!)
- Create a health protocol to support your best health. The specifics will vary but should include eating healthy food, taking vitamins and supplements to support your health and include exercise, social life, moral support, meditation and mindfulness.
- Implement the protocol and keep a journal of how you’re feeling as you progress.
In my opinion, if we want to reduce our tinnitus, creating a health protocol and taking any steps necessary to create a healthier version of ourselves, is a logical first step.
That means looking closely at our diet, our exercise or fitness routine, the thoughts we think and the environment we live in (i.e. stress).
In my case, to create a healthier diet I first needed to do an anti-inflammatory elimination diet protocol to discover what foods I may be intolerant to, because of my other symptoms rather than just for the tinnitus.
The first step I took after educating myself about tinnitus by watching videos, was to accept that I had it.
How to Accept Tinnitus
How? Initially, I told myself that it would be gone soon. But as time passed by, I had to acknowledge that it was going to be here for a long while.
And at that point, I realised that I had to embrace it.
One thought that’s helped me has been to ask myself the question: what if every single person in the world were born with tinnitus? Then what? How would we view it?
Would we even notice it? Because it would be our ‘normal’.
So then I told myself that this is just a normal part of life as a human and that made it easier even though it’s not strictly speaking true.
I decided to practise gratitude for the things that I have which are still working normally.
I can still enjoy a swim, for example. I can eat delicious food, or go for a hike. I give thanks for all the incredible things in my life to reinforce my focus on those things and take the focus off the tinnitus.
The other practice which helps to strengthen our minds is meditation.
By meditating I practise focussing on what I choose to focus on, rather than just on whatever floats my way.
And the thing is, when my mind is occupied in meditation there is silence. Unless I listen to the silence, and then the orchestra raises its volume tenfold. Of course, it isn’t getting louder, I’m just tuning in to it.
We can learn to meditate by setting aside a few minutes each day to sit in silence and practise the art of being at peace without focussing on the chattering mind. Each day, you may like to extend the time until you find your preferred length for your daily meditations.
You can also choose to meditate with music if you find the tinnitus interfering with your thoughts.
Self-hypnosis is another method to direct the brain to specific topics.
I don’t mean hypnotise myself not to hear the tinnitus.
No, I mean hypnotise myself to travel back in time or to wander through a beautiful garden.
The hypnosis session is totally unrelated to tinnitus but it has the effect of busying the mind elsewhere, so there’s no attention left for noticing the noise.
Telling ourselves powerful thoughts is a helpful technique but it won’t have any effect whatsoever if we’re just saying stuff and not believing it.
We need to persevere until we believe the thoughts we’ve chosen to intentionally think.
And many people will scoff at the idea. But let’s face it. Which is better, to spend life thinking ‘This is terrible’ or to spend life thinking ‘I’m so lucky that I can walk/hold my kids/eat’ or whatever it is we still have that we can be grateful for?
The second way of thinking will create more joy for the person than the first.
And on a last note, positive thinking has nothing to do with burying our heads in the sand and denying the facts.
The facts are that I have very loud noises in both ears and when my mind is occupied with other things it doesn’t hear it.
So I choose to be happy about that and live an extremely happy life.
Final Thoughts on How to Normalise Tinnitus
Start by changing your thoughts around tinnitus. Set out on a mission to teach your subconscious mind that you are lucky for so many other things and that tinnitus is not going to wreak havoc with your life anymore.
Set out to create the healthiest version of you that you possibly can, and celebrate your success along the way. Each little step forward is a small step down in the power that tinnitus has to control your life.
I hope you enjoyed this article and that it inspires you to find new acceptance of your tinnitus.