What is sensory seeking and how does it affect our everyday life

Whenever we are stressed or anxious, we turn to our different physical body parts and try to seek comfort through them. This phenomenon is known as sensory seeking.

Mostly, our bodies indicate to us when to reach out for a soothing experience for our nervous system and we do exactly that as well. It can be anything from picking skin and nails, chewing the inside of our cheek, or other pleasures.

However, these habits shouldn’t become a daily habit as they corrupt our everyday lives and create obstacles in our functioning.

Says therapist Rebekah Ballagh on sensory seeking,

Your nervous system has a way of communicating its needs with you. Often this is through signals in the body- sensory needs, somatic/physical sensations, they tell us.

Signs that we may be involved in sensory seeking for ourselves

Here’s a list of how we indulge ourselves in sensory seeking and enjoy its temporary pleasures.

Picking skin, hair, or nails

Firstly, many of us are often involved in picking our skin, hair, or nails whenever we are under stress or anxiety. This gives us great pleasure.

Biting inside of the cheeks, straw, gum, or lollipops

Another way to get sensory pleasure is to get involved by biting the inside of our cheeks, a straw, perhaps some gum, or sucking on lollipops so that our nervous system gets soothed.

Fidgeting with the body

Sometimes, we also sway our bodies, bounce our knees, fidget with our phones, and other such activities. This indicates that we are trying to get out of a nervous or anxious situation.

Indulge in dopamine-chasing

Furthermore, we also like to binge-watch our favorite shows on OTT apps and even re-watch shows that give us the most pleasure. This is known as dopamine chasing.

Gaming with friends, procrastinating, or eating sweet or salty foods

Finally, we also tend to enjoy gaming with our friends, binge eat heavily sweet or salty foods, and often tend to procrastinate things because this makes our nervous system calm.

Thus, these are the ways that we seek pleasure and enjoy our temporary freedom from the hustle. But, these things should not be made a part of our daily lives.

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