Today I wanted to chat with you guys about ASMR and how it affects me, and how I use it to take better control over my sleeping pattern, helping me to relax and to get myself out of stressful moods. So bear with me while I try to explain something that is probably going to sound really weird.
ASMR stands for Autonomous Sensory Meridian Response, and although very hard to describe to those who do not experience it; it can be ‘summed up’ as a euphoric feeling of relaxation and pleasure, with a tingling sensation usually in the scalp/neck/back area. Okay, with me so far? People experience ASMR in a number of ways, and not everyone gets it from the same thing. So for some people listening to quiet, repetitive sounds works, or watching someone perform a mundane but attentive task can trigger it.
For me personally? I experience it very strongly through very quietly spoken whispers/talking, or watching someone attend to a mundane but quiet task. For example, my earliest memories of it are when I was around 10 years old (I think) and I would be hanging out at a friends house and they would be playing with their toys. Quietly, but arranging their dolls, or fiddling with trinkets etc, and it would trigger a response in me. Any other kid would continue playing, but I found myself feeing sleepy; and there were multiple times I can actually remember falling asleep at a friends because of this. More recent years has seen the same response from me when watching beauty tutorials on Youtube. I went through a phase where I would purposely play Pixiwoo videos of an evening just to relax myself. I never even knew this was ‘a thing’ up until about 6 months ago when someone mentioned that a big Youtuber had done an ASMR whisper video, on Twitter. I clicked on it, wondering what ASMR was, and found myself totally getting tingles watching the video. Have I weirded you out yet? I hope not. Stick with me while I try to explain further.
After seeing this video of this Youtuber simply whispering a fairytale, and realising how relaxed it made me; I went in search of other ASMR videos, and I discovered a whole community of other people like me. It’s so strange, these people can be just whispering into a mic, flicking through books and magazines, or brushing someone’s hair; and it’ll give me a tingling sensation all down my spine and make me want to curl up and go asleep.
Some people associate this with a sexual pleasure, which I find totally weird. Well ok, not weird; it’s totally fine if that’s how some get their kicks. But for me it’s literally just a relaxation and sleep thing. I can’t even imagine how people see it as sexual to be honest! It’s more like a comfort thing for me. It’s like my grown up equivalent of being tucked in bed by my mum and her whispering a bedtime story.
These days, now that I know what triggers it and what affects me; I can use it to my benefit. I have a list of Youtube videos and podcasts that I know I can play when I most need to relax, and I use them almost every night to help me go asleep.
If you’re interested, or want to see if they have the same effect on you too, here are some of the ones I regularly listen to/watch;
– Sleepy Tea Time (From Femsplain founder Amber!)
And the video that made me realise what ASMR was and that it affected me? Dodie Clark’s ASMR video.
Not all of their videos/podcasts work for me. I don’t like tapping, crinkly sounds and this seems to be popular in the ASMR community. But it just doesn’t work for me. Whispering, storytelling and watching people read always helps though.
So maybe give it a try, pop some headphones in and lie back and see if it relaxes you/gives you tingles. Even after my explaining, it probably still seems weird to you, but that’s okay. All I know is I don’t struggle to sleep any more and I have found a quick fix for when I feel stressed. Winner!
Let me know what you think guys, or if you’re a fellow ASMR-er(?!) and you have any suggestions, feel free to leave them below.
And remember, no shouting, all quiet please… 😉
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