Have you ever heard someone say "Oh my gosh - that was so satisfying to watch" or better yet, have you ever experienced a warm tingle down your spine - kind of like goose bumps?
If you have, then you have experienced ASMR.
ASMR stands for Autonomous Sensory Meridian Response and has been recently become quite popular.
On YouTube there are millions of videos about it, and you may have even seen people in these videos either whispering or making soft light repetitive sounds that are pleasing to the senses, such as tapping or scratching a surface.
People who experience ASMR will say that they feel a light prickly or tingling sensation on their head, back of their neck or sometimes other parts of their body. For me personally, I feel it mostly in my upper arms. The experience of ASMR brings about feelings of happiness, positivity and peace.
There are two sensations brought about by ASMR:
Physical sensations which include chills, tingles, prickles and goose bumps.
Psychological sensations which include feelings of relaxation, calmness and even sleepiness.
ASMR is unfortunately not scientifically proven as of yet, and there is not much research on it either. In fact, only one study has been done on it to date, so all we have to go on is individuals swearing by using it to help them relieve their stress and just helping them to feel happy and more euphoric in general.
Examples of ASMR: (not limited to)
- A soft voice
- A song
- Having your hair played with
- Water being poured into a cup
- Fingers lightly scratching a surface
- Being touched on your skin
- Watching and hearing someone play with slime
- Paper crumpling or a packet being crinkled
- Food being cooked - the sight of the food and the sounds of the cooking
- Tapping sounds
There are so many ways that an AMSR reaction could be triggered in someone, but those are a few of the more common ones.
The sad thing about ASMR is not everyone can actually feel it.
Some people have reported feeling it throughout their lives, and when first finding out about AMSR, they knew immediately what it was, they could relate to it, feeling happy that there was now a name to put to the sensations they were feeling.
If you are one of these people who hasn't felt it, don't despair - it could still happen for you.
I recommend watching one of the many ASMR videos on YouTube.
They range from people whispering, to making deliberate noises like soft cracking noises, and paper scrunching. Some people even get an ASMR response from watching recipe videos where they can hear the packets being opened and the oil frying.
My favourite ones are the slime videos - they are extremely satisfying!
Since ASMR brings about feelings of calm and happiness, it is no surprise that it would be amazing for anxiety sufferers.
ASMR has been said to help with Anxiety, Depression, Insomnia, Mood, and even improved blood flow and digestion.
It may take a while for you to find what triggers your ASMR, but once you have found it, you can use it as and when you need to.
If you enjoy meditation and find visualization easy, you could even incorporate ASMR into this practice by either listening to an ASMR sound that you like or else purely visualizing something which brings on the sensations of ASMR.
Please read through the following links for a better understanding and please watch the numerous videos available on YouTube to find your perfect ASMR triggers!