Escapism is mental diversion by means of entertainment or recreation, as an “escape” from the perceived unpleasant or banal aspects of daily life. It can also be used as a term to define the actions people take to help relieve persisting feelings of depression or general sadness. – Wikipedia

A local cinema franchise once ran an ad campaign; people were pictured in frustrating situations that they ‘escape’ from by forming mental pictures of themselves at the movies whilst chanting ‘my happy place’.

I frequently have anxiety attacks, especially in the early hours of the morning, when things that are insignificant in the daylight hours appear to be insurmountable problems.  I learned years ago that to focus on my own ‘happy place’ would ease the anxiety within minutes. The last place I would choose is a movie house. With the help of a great therapist, I have learned that escapism is not only beneficial in coping with stress, it is essential. The idea is to visualise oneself in an environment where one has a sense of ‘oneness’ and is involved in pleasurable activity.

It could be taking a walk in a park; it is suggested by the Birkentock and oatmeal brigade that you chant the mantra ‘breathe in the green, breath out the red’, but I have never done this for fear of being thought a nutter by the passing Walk For Life housewives.

Another idea is to get a CD that has the sounds of wind and waves and woodchimes and stuff, and to visualise the heavens and the ocean. But I tried that once and it made me think of the spa I go to for massages. They have a CD like that and all I can think of is if there is a pimple on my bum or worry that I will relax to such an extent that I let off wind …

No, I come to my blog for my dose of an alternate reality. It is a place where goodness and wellbeing reign supreme; this is my happy place. A place where I am, quite literally, ‘in the pink’.


Where is yours?


86 thoughts on “AN ALTERNATE REALITY

  1. i think the blogs is a happy place for many of us.
    (wanders off wondering how being a troll could make some people happy)

    if only we understood while the wild worries wake us up when we are most defenceless………

  2. And I pray you are always “Quite in the pink” Hey, the time I saw you chanting you were saying…breath in the positive, and the negative out…Just kidding. Ha, this brings me to mind of asking you ( after seeing your comment on the Hooks latest post ) if you think maybe the elevator lady was in need of some of that “Escapism”?

    (CINDY)”In my experience, adult diaper vending machines should be standard fixtures in elevators”.

    Heh, that was too funny…I told him I personally think elevators should be equipped with a fully stocked mini-bar, and a barcalounger…I’d never reach my floor.
    Bless You

  3. Honestly, I have a lot of happy places. I’m lucky that way 🙂 For me my mom’s vegetable garden is the most relaxing place on earth 🙂

  4. Walking, meditating and blogging. Well, then there’s chopping wood, tea with friends, watching my cat, and listening to quality interviews on the radio/internet. Can’t forget the full facial with manicure and pedicure, sailing, skype chats with friends around the world. You know, Cindy, many people may find my life boring, but I really do love my life. There’s always more going on then there’s time for…

  5. I got up early this morning – couldn’t sleep – I have such a burden on my heart and can’t shake it off. Last week my wife had a heart attack. Yesterday I gave instructions to close one of my bank accounts because lately it has constantly been dropping into overdraft purely because of their monthly “maintenance” fees. And then there was a bounced cheque for no reason on another account that the bank itself has no knowledge about. Two lightning strikes in one postal delivery – it has been weighing on my mind. Then I checked my email and received your post about escapism and a happy place – coincidence? To be honest, my only comfort is the knowledge that God is greater than any problem. (My wife is back home from hospital now, restored to health after prayer, so all this anxiety is surely unnecessarily – but being human faith does not always come easily to me.)

  6. I agree. We all need to escape and we all need that happy place. My naturopath says that everyone needs at least 10 minutes of uninterrupted escapism time every day to stay perfectly healthy so I’d say you’re on the right track. xx

  7. It may sound odd, but then again, I am a bit odd, making and having a cup of tea is a great form of escapism for me as are my fur children, blogging, crosswords, crocheting and knitting. Of late a good biography/autobiography does the trick too.
    Have a super weekend Cindy.
    🙂 Mandy xo

  8. I love reading your blog so your happy place is also a bit my happy place. 🙂

    I don’t put as much of myself in my blog as you do, as a lot of my posts are book reviews. So I guess my happy place is one step before that: the reading of books. Isn’t that the ultimate escapism? I also find going swimming (doing lanes in a swimming pool) makes me forget everything that worries me – I should do that more often!

  9. Oh Cin, this post is fabulous and I love the photos, thanks so much… and I do remember the ad campaign. *Smile* I have been writing on first my websites… and now my websites and blogs for 13 years, 😉 Wow… I never realised how long it’s been… and how many happy hours I have spent in my ‘happy places’. Thank-you and have an awesome week-end, hugs Mands

  10. I’ve tried the happy place thing and it doesn’t work for me at all, though I would like it to. Not sure if it’s a lack of imagination or I still haven’t found what I’m looking for.

  11. I feel so happy and at peace whenever I read your blog…and your pics, always so lovely, give out cheery, positive vibes…thank you, Cindy, and God bless.. 🙂

  12. Blogging, that’s for sure. Sometimes writing, if my muse is with me and I feel inspired! Skype chatting also does it for me… and last, but not least, playing my favourite music CDs.

  13. Just throw me out in the woods with trees and a stream and it’s heaven on earth for me!
    Have you ever tried listening to Native American flute music?…seriously, it takes you this sacred place…peace to you today and every day.

  14. Great thoughts and ideas, Cin. I do love my Ocean Voyages CD when meditating. I also enjoy being a deck slug or a beach bum. 😎

    My happy place usually involves both SUN and WATER.

  15. I’ve never given much thought to where my happy place is, but I think, at this moment, I’d have to say it’s my home. Rundown as it is, constantly in a state of renovation, drafty, etc. etc. etc., I love it. It’s where I always want to be when things are going badly. Thanks for a great post Cindy. You look radiant in that photo!

  16. *laughing* at your spa comment
    Empathize and sympathize on the early-morning anxiety front, Cin. Writing is definitely a great escape as is getting outdoors and spending time with friends who make me laugh

  17. I too have anxiety attacks ; a previous post of mine indicated this and I remember you writing back and sayinhg you understoI I didn;t realise till now that you have them as well and that is why you understood. Mine when they occur is late in the night.

    My favourite place I go to regularly both physically and psychologically is the beach where I do brisk power walks or swim, like now where it is mid summer.

  18. I think I live in an alternate reality. In constant escapism. I fear the day I will have to leave it. Maybe that is why I can’t settle on one particular hobby and am constantly moving from one thing to another. But then again what exactly is wrong with that?

  19. well said. i agree w the escapism as something mucho friendly :). i’d also say its a good slap to anxiety which is a mean alternate reality of it’s own. i’m sorry u have been suffering friend. keep on w your courage. hugs

  20. My happy place is my home even before I had K. Somehow I always look forward to being at home when ever I am out. The weather could be hot or cold but when I get home I have to sit with my feet up and a cup of tea. family and friends don’t get but it is true that is what I leave a gathering/event to go home and just sit,hehe!

  21. At the moment I feel very blogged out and find other ‘happy places’ like playing with mosaics and canvases. I hope I get my blogojo back and more than that I hope life returns to a mangable pace!!! xxxx

  22. You are looking so well Cindy 🙂 – what a great post, had such a good chuckle about the spa! I think if I had to pick my “happy” place it would be anywhere where I can be quiet in my head (does that make sense – sounds melodramatic). Seems to incorporate doing something with my hands as well – reading/writing/gardening/crossstitch/photography – that sort of stuff! Happy days my friend ❤

  23. Long time no comment! Shame on me! I love the photo of you! You look mahvelous, dahlink! You blog has always been a happy place – contrary to mine yesterday, which, it turns out was quite depressing – but not intentionally so! Blame it on the synchronicity of the calendar on Januray 27!

    Your worry that you might “cut the cheese” at the day spa made me laugh! Ashley was telling me today after his massage (he gets one once a week) that he is afraid to relax completely because he’s feels the same thing will happen to him! 😆 Great minds, Cin – great minds – you and my hubs!

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