When you’re living with chronic illness, you often find yourself in need of distraction. You want to take your mind off the pain, fatigue, sadness, worries and boredom. And that’s when mind games can come in handy.
Now you’re probably wondering: why on earth would I need ‘mind games’ when I can simply grab my phone and browse social media, read blogs and watch funny videos to distract myself?
Of course, there’s wifi everywhere nowadays. But online entertainment as a way to cope with physical symptoms and emotional difficulties does have some downsides.
If you’re struggling with mental health, the things you’re reading and watching could trigger anxiety, FOMO or body image problems. And even today there are still times when turning to screens isn’t the best option. For example, the blue light coming from electronic devices inhibits the production of the sleep hormone melatonin. Not ideal when you find yourself staring at the ceiling and you’re hoping watching series will help you drift off.
Distracting yourself online can also be difficult when you’re in extreme pain and/or sensitive to light and sound. Anyone suffering from migraine, ME/CFS or sensory overload knows what it’s like to lie in a dark room with no other distractions than your own thoughts. And what about those times when you’re undergoing scary medical tests and treatments and you could really use a mental escape?
In these cases, it’s just you and your mind.
In theory, meditation, mindfulness and breathing exercises would work great during these times. But, if you have enough focus and mental energy to try these practices in the first place, you probably can’t keep yourself entertained like that for hours on end.
What’s more, it turns out that most people would rather shock themselves – literally! – than being left alone with their thoughts. So when it’s just you and your mind, what can you do to pass the time without going crazy?
Try these 8 mind games when you’re in need of distraction!