Four Ways Documentaries Help Your Mental Health

Documentaries. Documentaries are the answer for me when I need to distract and calm down — and I’m not talking about award-winning, cinematic masterpieces. I’m referring to the cheap, quickly done ones that you can find all over YouTube.

Say, one evening, you’re stressed and you feel your anxiety begin to rise like a boiling pot. Reach for a documentary.

  • You’ll learn a random factoid.
  • For those with social anxiety, mentioning the documentary and what you’ve learned is a nice way to keep a conversation going — just make sure they’re appropriate for conversation and easy to comment on. That excludes medical and true crime documentaries. The Toys That Made Us is fair game (people love nostalgia.).
  • They’re usually 40 – 60 minutes long, and not too fast-paced. Perfect for those feeling a manic episode coming on, and just long enough to help you take a breather. If that’s too long, watch it in chunks and go back to it when you need another moment to distract.
  • They might just help you readjust your perspective. Be honest with yourself; sometimes anxiety can come from something being blown out of proportion At least for me, I know that’s when mine will start to scream for attention. A simple embarrassment at work will turn into my anxiety yelling that I’m a failure and am an embarrassment. But, watching a young child deal with Progeria, reminds me of how great it is to have, at least, my physical health. Perspective. It’s all about perspective.

There you go. Documentaries, guys, reach for the documentaries.

I’ll leave some links below to get you started. Some are as short as eight minutes.

The Dark Past of Sea Monkeys https://youtu.be/A0xXKCOSZuQ

Girl Awakes After 20 Years in a Coma https://youtu.be/TOWTXwM0tik

How Rubber Bands are Made  https://youtu.be/aEIAYBGRyYY

The Amazing Art of Painting Restoration https://youtu.be/aEIAYBGRyYY

Let me know which ones you liked! Are there any more that I should have added? Share in the comments above!

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