How do you typically distract yourself from sadness and other craptastic feelings? Is it work, food, booze, Internet?
What does this habit look like specifically? Doing tasks you should delegate, late-night ice cream, wine after work, scrolling through Instagram?
The other day I was feeling… well, terrible. My mind was going, going, going with Nothing I do matters and Nobody likes me. It was showing me helpful images, like that time my friend told me, “My mom says you can’t ride to school with us anymore because you’re too grumpy in the morning.”
In these moments, one of my least effective self-soothing techniques is social media. But it’s more nuanced than that. I’m refreshing the Facebook notifications, hoping that someone commented on my recent post. I’m looking for new Instagram hearts, then reading through the names to disregard anyone who might have engaged because they’re trying to build their own following.
It’s more than mere distraction—it’s personal.
One of my least effective self-soothing techniques is social media. And it’s more than mere distraction—it’s personal.
I’m taking a break from social media because I have a hunch that the way I’m using it is detrimental to my wellness, my creativity, and my sense of connection with other people. (And because the moment I imagined doing so, I felt excited. Your body knows best!)
I know people who have recently experimented with a 30-day reflective break from alcohol, a break from added sugar, a commitment to delegate the tasks that they excel at but distract from the important strategic work that no one else can do…
So much has changed in our world. Why wouldn’t our needs and the ways we meet them change, too?
Notice what you compulsively turn to even when it doesn’t give you what you need. Imagine the spaciousness of taking a break from this behavior. Feel that space filling up with what you truly crave… love, appreciation, peace. Don’t expect to be fearless, or to know how it will fill up. Just take a second to feel in your body whether a break feels more like freedom than restraint. If it does, you’re onto something good, my friend!
Take a second to feel in your body whether a break feels more like freedom than restraint.
What do you want to take a break from?
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PC: Kimberly Dovi