Our latest interview, written by the lovely Tara, features the kindhearted and creative Sammy! She spoke with us about her favourite self-care and mindfulness activities.
Question One: Hi, Sammy! What are the hobbies and mindfulness activities that you’ll be discussing with us?
Hello! So, the hobbies I would like to talk about are singing and writing. I’d also like to discuss my love for nature and helping others.
Question Two: How does writing and being in nature help clear your mind? Would you recommend doing the latter to everyone?
Growing up my life wasn’t as joyful as I had wanted it to be. I didn’t have many friends and that really took a toll on me. It was during a really dark time in my life when I really and truly found myself through writing. I had always loved writing stories as a kid but I never thought more of it or really imagined it as something I could possibly connect with so much. However in 8th grade, things went downhill for me and I was in a really dark place. I remember talking to a friend and she told me about how she wrote things and I saw some of the things she wrote and they were so beautiful to me. I remember wanting to write that way because it intrigued me. It was like a way of being able to pour out everything that I had been holding inside. I’m one who holds in a lot of things and I don’t usually like to focus on those things but I really found writing intriguing so I decided to try it. After that, I began to write even more and I found a love for writing poetry and expressing my deepest emotions through metaphors and imagery. It was truly life changing and became something I really loved. It was a way of just releasing everything that I was holding and a way of also looking at my experiences in a different light. Without my experiences, I wouldn’t have anything to write about and they have made me who I am today. When it comes to nature, I can’t really put into words why it’s so special to me. Nature is just something that’s so calming and peaceful. I’ve always felt drawn to nature because of how lovely it is and how safe it makes me feel. I moved a few years ago to a new house in the country and it’s so much nicer than being in the city. I love waking up every morning to the birds chirping and I just truly admire taking walks and feeling the wind breeze caress my cheeks. Nature is something that really helps me with my anxiety, I’ve had anxiety pretty much my whole life. When I was younger I was diagnosed with separation anxiety and as I got older it changed a bit but I have incredibly high anxiety and it tends to control my life. Which is why being out in nature has really helped me a lot, it’s just so peaceful and it’s a way to clear my head and feel at peace for a bit. I feel blessed to be able to admire the beauty that surrounds me when it comes to nature. I would definitely recommend these things to others, they’ve really helped me. Obviously everyone is different so not everyone may enjoy these things but they can always give it a try because you never know until you try out new things.
Question Three: When did singing first become apparent and impactful in your life? Do you have any favourite artists that are shaping the way we listen to music today?
When I was younger I always loved singing. I remember my parents bought me a karaoke machine and I would always sing along to Love story by Taylor Swift, it was one of my favourite songs. I’ve always loved singing, I don’t really know why. I guess it just makes me feel happy and as though I am portraying my emotion in a beautiful way. I don’t sing as a career or anything, it’s more just out of fun but I honestly do want to take vocal lessons one day because I’m curious as to how I could improve. There are so many artists I love honestly, like the list could go on. I don’t have a specific genre of music that I like, I see beauty in every song and every artist. Music is beautiful and therapeutic, it speaks so deeply to my soul. One artist I really admire though is Banners and that’s because Banners is so incredibly talented and it’s like every song that comes out by the artist, just resonates so deeply with me and what’s going on in my life. He’s also an incredibly underrated artist who deserves way more love than he receives. But yeah, honestly I love so many different artist it’s hard to put them into categories. I have over a million different albums on spotify for my different mood because I need that and I truly admire all kinds of music and all singers. I think every artist is shaping the world and I admire the artists who are able to write deeply and sincerely from their hearts, the most. It’s not easy to be vulnerable, especially when it comes to being in front of millions of people. However the most meaningful songs in my opinion, are the ones we can connect to the most. It makes us feel as though we aren’t alone.
Question Four: Why is it important to scope out time for yourself each day?
I think in out daily lives we become so focused on the things happening around us and other people that we forget to care for ourselves and take a break. It’s important to take those breaks and to work on ourselves because our health matters and if we’re unhappy for too long, that could cause us to explode. There’s nothing wrong with taking breaks and taking time to think to yourself. We need that in life, because without it we’ll become unhappy and if our mind is constantly stressing it could affect our daily routine and life patterns. Just the other night my stress affected my sleep and I couldn’t sleep all night because of it. It’s really important to take time for yourself sometimes, it’s not a selfish thing even though many may feel that way. It’s important to work on yourself and to learn how to love who you are and it’s okay to take breaks or time away from others if you need to do that.
Question Five: Have you ever indulged in meditation? Why do you think so many people are drawn to it?
Honestly I’ve tried meditation and it didn’t work as fast as I wanted it to. I’ve been meaning to try it again but I need the patience for it. I struggle with having patience for things sometimes and it’s something I need to work on. But I know many people who’ve spent their time meditating and they really enjoy it so I do think it can be a very helpful thing and it’s a way to relax yourself which can be very helpful especially when one has anxiety. I usually use breathing techniques to help myself though.
Question Six: How do you manage your self-care hobbies during the day? Do you keep a schedule?
I don’t have a schedule, I’ve actually been thinking of making one though because that could help. Honestly, for a long time I wasn’t taking care of myself or focusing on myself and even now I struggle with that but I’m finally trying to do it. I’m finally trying to focus on myself and not so much others. I used to be the type of person who’d put all of their energy into everyone they met and I’d try my hardest to help others and make them happy because it was the only thing I knew how to do. I’ve always found joy from helping other people and so I really enjoy doing it but the problem is I would spend so much of my time helping others that I would ignore everything that was bothering me and it would just pile on even more. So now I’ve finally decided to step away from that atmosphere for a bit and to just focus on myself and to start loving who I am.
Question Seven: You’d mentioned that you always like to think that you ‘..leave a good impression in everyone’s faces..’ Could you elaborate on why that’s important to you?
As I think I mentioned earlier, when I was younger I didn’t really have many friends. I was mainly a loner, not because I wanted to be but because I didn’t really have a choice. I always tried my hardest to make friends but everyone always left me and it was really something I struggled with. I didn’t understand why people always left and didn’t like me, it made me feel like I wasn’t good enough and like there was something wrong with me. Even now I still struggle with that sometimes, I try to please people a lot and to change myself so they like me. The truth of it all is that I’ve always wanted to be loved and to belong, but I’ve never belonged anywhere because I’m not like everyone else and it’s a hard thing to deal with honestly. So it’s so important I make a good impression because all of my life I’ve felt unloved and disliked by everyone, I’ve always wanted people to like me so badly but they never have so when I leave a good impression in someone’s life, that makes me very happy. Also, because I know nothing lasts forever and I want to leave a mark in people’s lives so they remember me as someone with a good heart because that is all I want to be; someone with a good heart who spreads love to others who need it. I know how it feels to feel unloved and I wouldn’t wish that feeling upon anyone.
Question Eight: Thanks for reaching out to us! What has been the biggest takeaway you’ve had during the quarantine period?
Of course, it was lovely talking with you! I think I’ve just learned to appreciate the things I have more during this time period and that we really do need to be mindful of our actions and the way they affect others. During this time period it is important to focus on ourselves and I think I’ve finally realized that through all of this. It’s easy to just want to distract yourself with daily life, but when something like this [Covid-19] happens and you’re forced to sit at home with your thoughts, you really begin to realize what you seek in life and what you should be working on.