This Temple ASMRtist Wants Everyone to Know How Beneficial it is for Mental Health
Social media platforms have been flooded with ASMR (autonomous sensory meridian response) videos and posts within the last year. From #satisfyingposts on Instagram, to popular YouTube ASMR channels, like 13-year-old Life With Mak, ASMR is addicting to watch. But what exactly is it? An acronym for the term “autonomous sensory meridian response,” ASMR triggers a pleasurable sensation that is often used to ease insomnia, anxiety, and stress.
ASMR videos typically consist of individuals doing actions such as pulling apart putty, whispering, up-close eating, or tapping into a microphone. These common ASMR videos are just a few of the many trigger sounds and actions ASMRtists use in their videos. Abby Stoetzer, a rising senior majoring in vocal performance in Boyer College of Music and Dance, is an ASMRtist who began her YouTube channel, abbystarASMR, over a year ago. We caught up with Abby to learn more about the inspiration behind starting her ASMR YouTube channel.
When did you first hear about ASMR?
Abby: “I was a senior in high school and my friends and I were messing around at a production practice for Beauty and the Beast. He introduced the concept to me and did an example of ASMR in my ear. I thought it was really satisfying but I felt kind of weird admitting that. I started actually listening to ASMR during my freshman year of college at Temple because I suffer from panic attacks, anxiety, and depression. The transition to college during freshman year was causing most of the stress I was experiencing. I discovered these videos and would stay up all night watching them to feel relaxed. I started feeling really passionate about it because it was the only thing that relaxed me enough to the point where I could forget about everything.”
Talk about when you first decided to start your YouTube dedicated to ASMR.
Abby: “My sophomore year of college, I decided to sit down and make videos. I whipped out my iPhone and started to record randomly. I did it all in one shot and decided to upload it. After two weeks I got 100 subscribers. I originally thought I wasn’t going to get a lot of views. I watched a lot of ASMR and I came to the point where I wanted to also help people by doing it, since it helped me immensely. It was a good way of putting creative energy somewhere that would help others.”
What are the benefits of watching AMSR videos?
Abby: “ASMR is often described as the tingling feeling that runs up your back, neck, or spine. I often compare it to when you listen to a really good song and you get chills. The tingles help calm and are a euphoric state. It’s mainly used for relaxation or as background noise. It is meditative and can be used as hypnosis, depending on the trigger.”
What do you enjoy most about doing ASMR videos?
Abby: “The whole ASMR community is uplifting to one another. It is interesting seeing all the different ideas that people who do ASMR come up with in their videos. It’s so fun and relaxing. There is always something out there that creates ease and relaxation. Every night I still watch other ASMR videos. I’ve recently been doing a Zodiac series on my channel where I whisper read each sign’s characteristics from the Only Astrology Book You’ll Ever Need.”
Explain the different ASMR varieties.
Abby: “There are a lot of ASMR varieties, and some have began to think that mukbangs are a form of ASMR. I don’t consider mukbangs ASMR because the point is to produce triggers for a certain reaction. There are mukbangs used for ASMR, which focus on the mouth chewing sound, but most are not. Also, there is a huge misconception that ASMR is for sexual purposes. ASMR is not sexual. There is an ASMR category that is considered as erotica, but all other ASMR videos are not intended to be sexual. This stigma idea started when people referred to the tingles and triggers as a braingasm. It is important that people know there is no sexual context behind ASMR. It is to help people to relax.”
How can anyone get started in AMSR?
Abby: “You must be passionate and be an advocate for [ASMR]. Nowadays, everyone thinks it’s mainstream and very much a niche thing to pursue. It has been around on YouTube and existed for a while before it came popular. If you are just getting started, remember to do it with purpose.”
Who are other ASMRtist you look up to?
Abby: “Karuna Satori ASMR and Chiara ASMR. Chiara is Italian and she does videos both in English and Italian. She’s innovative and devoted to what she does. Collaborating is hard with ASMR, but I recently collaborated with Ally ASMR. I collaborated with her for a New Year’s themed ASMR video and it was a little difficult because she lives in California, and we use different technology. She was awesome to collaborate with, and she’s very successful in the ASMR community.”
Where do you see yourself with AMSR in the future?
Abby: “I see more technological updates in the very near future for better content on my channel. My goal when I first started was originally just to make a video, but now it’s really about respecting my subscribers and helping them in any way I can through ASMR.”
How do you do “self-care”?
Abby: “My self-care is doing nothing. I’m not one for face masks or pampering because I find it to be a chore. To me it is getting enough sleep, eating a good meal, or taking a really good shower. I lie in my bed and watch Friends for the thirteenth time. I don’t always like that people may consider that as not ‘self-care.’ Self-care is what you want it to be. Whatever makes you calm and relaxed is what matters. There is not definition for self-care.”
ASMR videos are more than just trendy entertaining posts you see celebrities do in interviews like W Magazine. ASMR serves as a method for relaxation and is intended to benefit one’s mental health.