Where Will The Secret Door Take You Today?

Fancy venturing into an entirely new country without moving a muscle? Meet the Secret Door...

It's been a tough 12 months for us all, with holidays being off the cards for a while. However, that doesn't mean you can't explore brand new territory in countries that may have crossed your mind. Using the Secret Door as your tool, you can venture to the far-flung shores of Asia or journey into the depths of South America - the world is, quite literally, your oyster. It might even give you a few ideas for your bucket list.

Click our slate grey composite door below to start your journey now!

The secret door

It’s fair to say that many of us are struggling to escape the boredom of lockdown – we’ve been doing this for almost a year, after all. Research shows that a large chunk of 2020 was spent indulging in activities that centre around escapism. We’re talking Netflix-bingeing and video gaming, as well as offline activities like reading or meditation. It’s no secret that burying our heads elsewhere feels more appealing at the moment, but how can we get the most out of our next escapism fix while protecting our mental wellbeing? We’ve teamed up with psychotherapist Andre Radmall to find out more.

What is escapism and why are we craving it?

In its simplest form, escapism refers to our desire to seek comfort outside of our daily lives, often through the use of our imagination or entertainment. “Once in the escapist zone, time passes quickly, stress is reduced and there are new and stimulating things to focus on,” Andre says. “The key hormone that’s raised by escapism is dopamine, the pleasure hormone, so we then return to our relationships, work and family feeling refreshed and with a wider perspective on the world around us,” he adds.

It’s easy to see why lockdown has heightened our urge to reach this level of comfort. Many have turned to films and TV series, which explains why the BBC reported in August 2020 that streaming and internet use were breaking new records. Others have found solace in discovering unseen spaces around the world using Google Maps, something that our very own Secret Door lets you do with ease.

How much escapism is too much escapism?

Like with anything, too much of something can become draining or even detrimental to your wellbeing. Andre explains that viewing escapism as complementary to daily reality rather than a replacement for it can be a helpful outlook. “Signs that we’re doing too much ‘escaping’ are increased isolation, irritability, passivity and loss of concentration at work. In moderate doses, escapism should increase energy, create a sense of wellbeing and refresh perspective,” he goes on to say.

Could switching up our escapism habits be beneficial to our mental health?

Maintaining a healthy balance between daily life and short bursts of escapism could work wonders, whether it’s a 30-minute gaming session or watching one or two episodes of your favourite series. You could even break up your working day with a quick visit to another country using our Secret Door – virtually exploring new places that you could feasibly visit one day can help to bring a sense of balance to proceedings, while giving you inspiration for your next, long-awaited holiday, of course.

Complementing the above with new hobbies will only boost this, as it can help you switch up your routine. Andre also emphasises that anything that involves reaching out to others is a bonus, as any form of escapism that involves human connection will have a fantastic effect on your wellbeing.

So next time you want to chase that dopamine hit, why not consider trying something a little bit different to your go-to activities? Because let’s face it, there’s never been a better time to try something new.

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