That is, it is possible to have too much good. While pleasant distractions provide valuable mental and physiological breaks from stressful states, “my reluctance is to recommend distraction,” said Dr. Zoccola, “while it can get people out of the moment, if it takes too long, it could prevent people.” fix a problem or create a new one. “Teens can do a simple check on themselves by asking,” Are my distractions interfering with what I’m doing? “
Create space in which the mind can wander
As a third option, young people sometimes use vacancies in their schedule for activities that are engaging, but only to a certain extent. Researchers use the term “gentle fascination” to refer to activities that require attention but do not fully occupy the mind, such as exercising. B. Spending time in nature or taking a long shower. Other exciting tasks such as playing a video game or solving a puzzle recruit what is referred to as “hard fascination”.
Compared to the hard fascination, the soft fascination uses less mental bandwidth and leaves the mind more space to wander and think. Avik Basu, an environmental psychologist at the University of Michigan who studies soft fascination, explains that activities that “don’t flood the mind” are more restorative because “a softly fascinating environment allows for reflection – and then the problem is – that Loosening part of our brain can really get to work. “
In other words, gentle fascination relieves stress by helping us close those browser mental tabs. By taking leisurely thought, we can sift through mental disorder, quiet internal noise and find fresh, useful solutions. According to Dr. Basu are “those aha moments that you have in your shower – this is the problem-solving mechanism that the mind works with. The answer is just bubbling up! “
Unfortunately, for many young people, the pandemic has so far removed routine occasions for gentle fascination. Indeed, many of us have realized how much spiritual housework we used to do when we made our daily commute or walked a familiar route to work or school. Teens now may have to go out of their way to seek low-key activity if their minds feel cluttered. And they may need adult encouragement to do so, because just walking or looking out the window can seem boring compared to the excitement of catching up or consuming distractions online.
When it comes to self-recovery, we all have options – with connection, distraction, and reflection playing the main roles. Concern for our mental and emotional health is even more important now than usual. Therefore, it is important for people of all ages to take the breaks that best suit the needs of the moment.