Escapism: the tendency to seek distraction and relief from unpleasant realities. My reality isn’t unpleasant but it’s not where I want to be. So escapism helps. To me escapism comes in different forms. I find it a form of self care almost. I guess in reality escaping from real life isn’t the best way of tackling issues but distractions can be useful sometimes.
At the moment the world is a strange place, it feels hostile and disconnected. I have felt hopeless and consumed. Consumed with all that 2020 has brought. So as a way for improving my mental wellbeing, I have found distractions helpful.
For as long as I can remember I have found escapism in watching television and films. I have always loved thrillers, crime and prison documentaries and films about serial killers. I find the thrill of the chase and the impending doom of thrillers and action films fascinating and distracting. The funny thing is, I scare really easily. But I like getting scared by a film because it’s all about the escape from normal life. Not being comfortable for 2 hours whilst sitting on the edge of my seat with a pillow up to my eyes, waiting for something to make me jump…it’s thrilling! They give me chance to escape into a different reality, especially documentaries. Following the detectives in their search to find a murderer or a tale of a family trying to get justice for their innocent relative that has been imprisoned.
I get hooked on a series and can spend all evening watching every episode. My boyfriend thinks I’m mad. He doesn’t find thrillers that entertaining, but for me its always got to be a thriller. Comedies just don’t do it for me. Unless they’re really funny; Step Brothers for example, it gets me every time!
I’m currently watching The Fall on Netflix, I’ve nearly finished series 2 and I’m loving it. Normally I would finish something like this within a weekend but Im also watching Below Deck.
This is where my taste changes. Below Deck is a reality show about the staff that work on multi-million dollar yachts and the guests that stay aboard. I am a sucker for a good reality show. This again I find escapism in. I can watch an episode of the Kardashians, for example, after a long day at work and once it’s finished I am calm again. There is no serial killers or interesting plot twists. It’s just pure meaningless entertainment. A distraction from my life. A break from my reality and an insight into someone else’s. I watch YouTube videos for this purpose too. Watching vlogs of someone tidying their house, doing yoga in the mountains or cooking their tea. Meaningless everyday activities that are somewhat more interesting when it’s not me doing them. I can switch off and just be somewhere else for a few minutes. This is all it can take for me to feel calmer and more positive about my reality.
As I said my reality is not negative, unpleasant or poor; but taking time out of my day and my life sometimes can really benefit my mind.