How to Find Your Voice in the Middle of the Noise: Healing from Childhood Trauma is the first self-help book from Sajida Haddad of My Rollercoaster Journey; she has also published a number of other books. The book includes tips based on the author’s own experience and things she’s researched, along with recommendations for further reading.
The first chapter explores how to recognize your own childhood trauma and keep from enacting the same patterns with your own kids. Sajida writes, “The way you treat your child becomes their inner voice, and it can be a positive inner voice if you encourage and praise your child and help them grow, or it can be a negative voice if you always belittle your child and compare them to others and make them feel like they’ll never be good enough for you.”
Other topics that are covered include friendships and boundaries, tuning out external noise to find your genuine internal voice, validation and advice, and self-esteem. There’s a chapter on faith, and I was quite impressed to learn that Sajida has memorized the Quran.
The final chapter is on healing your inner child. It addresses the effects of adverse childhood experiences and the stigma around mental health issues, and it offers strategies to support recovery and wellness. Sajida has adapted the 12 steps of AA to create the 12 steps of trauma recovery.
I always like when authors aren’t overconfident in the things they’re recommending. The author writes, “Take everything I say with a grain of salt. I am a writer. I’m not an expert. Even if I were an expert, don’t follow me blindly. Think. Finding your inner voice starts with knowing who you are. It starts with knowing your core values and doing things that resonate with them and leaving the rest behind.”
Throughout the book, Sajida emphasizes that people who’ve experienced childhood trauma aren’t alone, it’s not their fault, and healing and breaking the cycle is possible. While the book addresses the effects of childhood trauma, it doesn’t dig deep into particular traumatic experiences; it’s more forward-oriented, encouraging, and optimistic that people can find their authentic voice and create positive change.
The book is written in a chatty tone of voice, and reading it felt like sitting and having tea with a friend. I quite liked sitting down with Sajida for a mental cup of tea.
How to Find Your Voice in the Middle of the Noise is available on Amazon (affiliate link).