Mental health & wellbeing matters: the things that cheer us up

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In our regular spot where we chat mental health and wellbeing, we’re focusing this week on the hobbies that cheer us up.

My name is Sarah and I have a habit of being… well, let’s just say I’m not exactly a ray of sunshine. I’m filled with trauma, mental illness, medical issues, and more than my fair share of sleepless nights. And frankly, my previous articles reflect that without question.

So I wanted to take this opportunity to lighten the mood. What do you want? I can offer memes, Star Wars references, song lyrics, or photos of my cat.

Or maybe let’s just have a discussion about the things that cheer us up. We all have hobbies, or interests, or crushes on that one actor from that thing.

Here are a few of mine:


I recently purchased a low cost sewing machine. Low cost, but a great name and it works beautifully. I have already made a cushion cover, and plan to make more. I also have a few other basic ideas, and I hope to make them in bulk to help me grow in confidence and skill so I can move onto other products. And don’t even get me started on all the amazing fabrics.


I can’t sing a note, or play a single instrument… unless a triangle counts. And I don’t have a triangle. But I am a huge music lover, and my tastes range across all genres. From Slipknot to Ludovico Einaudi, and from Diana Ross to Taylor Swift. One of my favourite playlists literally puts over 1000 songs on shuffle.


C’mon. Adult colouring books are awesome. From the intricate to the sweary – I have quite a selection. And I also have a child’s colouring book about princesses and unicorns to appease the lost child inside me.


My favourite author is Dean Koontz, and I have over 70 of his books. I also have a good few by Kathy Reichs. And the last few books I read have ranged from comedic to tragic and romantic.


I’m no Ansel Adams, but whether I use my mobile phone or my hefty DSLR camera, I do enjoy looking at life through a variety of lenses and perspectives. I’ve even been the official photographer for three family weddings and a company Christmas party, so I guess I’m not so bad.


From articles such as this and my personal favourite about the film Pihu, to poetry I have performed at spoken word events, I find writing to be therapeutic and rather creative. I appreciate that my words don’t appeal to all audiences, but if they appeal to even one person other than myself then I am doing something right.


No, not of the Xbox or Playstation variety. I don’t even know what a Red Dead Redemption is. But I have a few games on my phone, and they are great for my anxiety. From the game where I match numbers to one of the many Match Three format games.


Okay, given you are reading this on Film Stories, that seems a little on the nose. But I do enjoy many films, whether they are on streaming services or at the cinema. Some of my favourites include Mindhorn, Beauty And The Beast (1991), and Les Miserables.

So you see, despite what my many mental health and wellbeing articles may suggest, I do know how to smile, laugh, and even feel joy.

Today I am going to be focusing on sewing and colouring.

What about you? What hobbies or interests keep you active, positive, and smiling? Some of us are always on the lookout for something new.


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