One random day in 2016, the little ones were watching kiddie videos on YouTube, and one in particular caught my attention:
As I watched the person cut and mold the sand, I had the strangest electric-feeling sensation run through me; it started in my chest and radiated outwards. I felt a serious peace & calm from it, and I was curious to figure out what it was. Much like those CDs of waves/thunderstorms/etc.! Turns out, it’s ASMR: Autonomous sensory meridian response.
ASMR is defined as a euphoric experience characterized by a static-like, or any sort of tingling sensation on the skin that typically begins on the scalp and moves down the back of the neck and upper spine, precipitating relaxation.
Using this newfound knowledge, I searched for more kinetic sand videos, but rarely did I find that same sensation; they were sometimes too crunchy sounding, too loud, or too fast.
It was Goldilocks’ porridge for my ears.
So I simply went back to watching that same video whenever I felt overwhelmed, and went about my (super stressful at the time) business. We were selling our house at the time, so yeah, STRESS.
Last December, while going through an especially trying time where my anxiety was just through the roof, I turned to YouTube to try and find more Kinetic Sand videos that worked for me. I watched a few, liked a few, and then accidentally stumbled onto Gentle Whispering ASMR.
I *believe* this was the first video of hers that I watched.
At first, it felt odd, watching a person be so… personal through the screen. But it was so calming! Her voice was so soothing, and as I dove further into her videos, I found the tingles I was searching for. She has all sorts of videos: roleplays (like doctor-style, etc.), hand movements videos (which are like sorcery to put me to sleep), makeup videos, trigger words (repetitious words that tend to trigger tingles), tapping… a gold mine of ASMR goodness.
(I have to mention: I had enjoyed SilentCitadel‘s videos in the past, who specializes in “whisper videos,” but I never put the two together until now.)
I started a nightly ritual of sitting at my computer, listening to (and watching sometimes) these videos while I wrote (or stared at a blank page and wished I was writing), because they helped me stay focused; the rhythmic tapping, talking, etc. preoccupied the OCD in my brain, and left the rest of it free to work. I realized after a while that some of the videos made me so calm that I was sleepy. That’s when it dawned on me: I could use these to try and sleep!
So I started loading videos up on my phone or Kindle, and listening to them through headphones (thanks to my hubs for buying me bad ass headphones for Christmas!). I WAS OUT LIKE A LIGHT.
It was the most calm– and quick!– sleep I had had in years. It wasn’t taking me hours to eventually fall asleep; I was usually out within 15 minutes, which felt like a miracle in itself. (My anxiety gets worse at night, which is apparently the norm for many people.)
After a while, I decided to branch out to other ASMRtists, as they’re called, to see who melded with my needs at the time, and so I didn’t get burned out on Maria (Gentle Whispering), which is apparently a thing that can happen: you listen so much, so often, that it stops working.
Now, I have a rotation of ASMRtists that I run to for any given thing: some have better ASMR vids for productivity or just for daytime relaxation, others have soft, slow vids that are better-suited for nighttime tingles. I’d like to share some of my favorites with you today!
Gibi tends to do faster videos, so for me, she’s good for chill while being productive and focused. I really dig her voice and laid-back style. This is one of my faves! She does a wide assortment of videos, but enjoys roleplays a bunch.
ALB is like a tiny retro vintage pixie anime character that I’d love to keep in my jacket pocket for crappy days. And good days. JUST ALL THE DAYS. She does roleplays, soft-spoken stuff, hair videos, makeup… she’s adorable and seems like such a lovely person.
Latte, much like Gentle Whispering, is so soft and gentle, and her voice is lyrical to me. She does a lot of “caretaker” style videos, salon videos, etc., and is a go-to for sleep.
First off, the title of this video makes me laugh. They’re not those kinds of steamy whispers; she’s literally using a humidifier to fill the air with smoke. Tingting does some of the best tapping videos, and has some great “trigger word” videos too.
When you want sound-based ASMR videos, ASMRsurge is one of the tops. His videos are no-talking (at least, I’ve never seen one with talkinng?), and really hone in on items and the sounds they make. My intro to him was a soap carving video!
One thing you’ll see in the comments on nearly every ASMRtist I mentioned, is people just like me who find relief from their anxiety and the like with these videos. These help keep my mind clear, focused, and less shouty, and they’ve really helped me improve my mood, my sleep, and my productivity! I had no idea there was such a community out there, but I’m thankful I know now.
Do you have any ASMR favorites? Feel free to share them with me!