How to face the end of days when everything is overwhelmingly terrible
How to face the end of days when everything is overwhelmingly terrible

Jessie Collins

Here are our favourite dog-friendly hotels in Ireland for every budget
Here are our favourite dog-friendly hotels in Ireland for every budget

Megan Burns

A beginner’s guide to: Starlight kayaking on Ireland’s glow-in-the-dark lake
A beginner’s guide to: Starlight kayaking on Ireland’s glow-in-the-dark lake

Geraldine Carton

This house in Myrtleville, Co Cork with spectacular sea views is on the market for €850,000
This house in Myrtleville, Co Cork with spectacular sea views is on the market for...

Megan Burns

Does astrology affect our dreams and other things we’ve always wanted to know
Does astrology affect our dreams and other things we’ve always wanted to know

Sarah Finnan

Life-changing stories: ‘I went from being suicidal to becoming a Samaritans volunteer’
Life-changing stories: ‘I went from being suicidal to becoming a Samaritans volunteer’

Amanda Cassidy

8 engrossing Netflix picks worth starting this weekend
8 engrossing Netflix picks worth starting this weekend

Jennifer McShane

Meet the Irish sisters behind the interior selections at Cabü cabins in Cavan
Meet the Irish sisters behind the interior selections at Cabü cabins in Cavan

Amanda Kavanagh

The expert guide to embracing and growing out your grey hair
The expert guide to embracing and growing out your grey hair

Holly O'Neill

Beat the Sunday fear by treating your weekend like a holiday
Beat the Sunday fear by treating your weekend like a holiday

Colette Sexton

Image / Self

How the ‘hobby humblebrag’ can help ease anxiety during lockdown


by Jennifer McShane
17th Oct 2020
blank

We all are feeling stressed and anxious as Ireland tries to contain further spread of the coronavirus. It stands to reason we might need an extra hand trying to keep calm. We’ve reported many times on the positive after-effects of mindfulness (simply being present) and simple craft making can benefit your mental health. It’s been proven as an aid to those struggling with depression and linked to relieving stress while boosting focus and even relationship satisfaction. 


But if you’re not keen on the art of mindful meditation on its own (it’s a skill and can be tricky to grasp right away), you can go down another route by using specific activities or techniques that are just as effective (and handy as you spend more time indoors). It’s become known as the ‘Hobby Humblebrag’ on social media; going back to basics and proudly showing off our appreciation for simpler activities from arts and crafts, to knitting, puzzle-making, banana bread-baking and all the things we said we simply never had time for pre-pandemic. Here are five you can get started with straight away.

Colouring books

This is all about using colouring as a relaxation tool. Through colouring, you can focus your mind on one small task at a time, whether that is shading an area, or losing yourself in the finer details. While this is by no means a cure for stress or anxiety, it can be another weapon to add to your arsenal, calming and centring your mind. There is an array of adult colouring books now available, solely designed for this purpose.

Embroidery

 

View this post on Instagram

 

A post shared by ??? ??? (@nyang_stitch) on

One of the most underrated of skills, my Instagram feed has quite literally been lit up with incredible miniature works of art. Time and patience are needed, both of which we have much of due to the pandemic. Grab your needles and threads, sit back in the sunshine and begin. There’s plenty of free patterns available online but Etsy has some of the nicest I’ve seen so far. Also, the Instagram account above has some truly breathtaking examples.

Craft making

If you’ve been meaning to take up a creative pursuit, there’s never been a better time; studies have shown that crafting lowers stress levels and increases happiness. From patchwork to knitting or flower arranging, these crafts enable you to focus on the task at hand, tuning out the world around you and creating something you can be proud of. It’s a truly enjoyable form of mindfulness.

Origami 

A photo posted by Origamea (@origamea) on

This is all about folding pretty paper. Origami might have originated 1,500 years ago, but experts are now saying the ancient paper technique has very modern mental health benefits that include increasing concentration and encouraging positivity. In many ways, it’s a natural progression from adult colouring books, but the difference is that with origami you are actually creating a piece of art and not just filling in someone else’s drawing. And you can do it anywhere.

The joy of a simple walk

And if you are feeling antsy from doing any kind of activity, some might find a newfound hobby of sorts in just going outside to walk every single day. We may be limited as to how far we can go, but there are signs that summer is almost here: clear blue skies, fresh air, the smell of cut grass and plenty of flowers in bloom.  There is no destination in mind when it comes to walking. and it’s best to avoid tight time restrictions or deadlines. This is simply strolling mindfully, noticing the environment around you, allowing thoughts to flow in and out of your mind. For your 2km walk, it’s all about seeing the here and now, until we can venture out further.

Main photograph: @nyang_stitch


Read more: A morning ritual to keep you centred while working from home

Read more: 10 things to do at home with the kids with the schools closing for coronavirus

Read more: Remote working is about to become our new normal. Let’s keep it that way

Also Read

blank
SELF
Would you tell a friend if they’d gone overboard with Botox or fillers?

 Less may be more when it comes to cosmetic enhancements, but we all know someone who’s taken things a little...

By Amanda Cassidy

endometriosis
HEALTH & WELLNESS, REAL-LIFE STORIES
‘I had to leave Ireland to get my endometriosis treated’

For far too long, the concerns of women have fallen on deaf ears when it comes to the Irish health...

By IMAGE

blank
ADVICE
What can ancient philosophers teach us about love today?

What do the philosophers say about love? Quite a bit. Philosophy lecturer Alissa MacMillan says we can learn a lot...

By IMAGE

blank
premium PARENTHOOD
Rosemary MacCabe: ‘I just kept thinking, what if we don’t buy it – and something happens my baby?’

I remember, in the days after my sister gave birth to her third child, Chance – who is now a...

By Rosemary MacCabe

cervical
HEALTH & WELLNESS, REAL-LIFE STORIES
I’m 29 – no sign of any babies, but I do have cervical health concerns

The first time I got a smear, I was at an age where pregnancy was probably the scariest gynaecological diagnosis...

By Jordan Lillis

blank
RELATIONSHIPS
Can you ever really be friends with an ex?

“Can we still be friends?” It’s a question I’ve been asked a couple of times and for various reasons, I’ve...

By Grace McGettigan

blank
PARENTHOOD
Postpartum Psychosis: ‘It hit me completely out of the blue’

Postpartum psychosis is one of the most underdiagnosed and undertreated illnesses that a new mother can face. So why don’t...

By Amanda Cassidy