Our wallets can save you time and money, but can they also save you stress? New evidence shows that fidgeting with something, like a ball-point pen or a trigger wallet, can help reduce stress and anxiety and even help maintain focus through long tasks! We all wondered what was behind the explosion of fidget toys starting with the fidget spinner, and this science just might explain it.
What is a fidget toy?
The fidget toy fad erupted in earnest in 2017 with the “fidget spinner”, something that can now be found at any toy store, gas station or supermarket. These fidget items are usually small, pocket-sized things that keep the hands busy with buttons, joy stickers, or classically, the spinner. Often they include some sort of popping (like our trigger wallets).
Some say that these toys are just fad while others think fidget toys could have clinical applications for people with ADHD. So what’s the truth?
Among who are fidget toys popular?
Fidget toys are by far more popular amongst children and teens.
While to many these toys seemed like something that kids would quickly get bored with, being rather simple and repetitive, the popularity has continued to grow.
Evidence can be seen through sales on amazon, but perhaps more importantly, through cultural relevance amongst younger generations on platforms such as TikTok.
Why are fidget toys so popular?
The most recent fidget toys to blow up, the popping fidget toy, have been confounding parents all over the world because the item is essentially silicone bubble wrap. Even though it’s only use is to pop the buttons back and forth, it’s currently #6 on Amazon’s bestseller toys.
There has been some discussion that fidget toys might help people with ADHD or those on the autism spectrum, but the research so far is inconclusive.
So what’s the appeal of these seemingly mundane toys? Are people more fidgety in general than before, or do fidget toys fill a need that many children (and adults) already had?
What is the purpose of fidget toys?
The potential uses of a fidget toy are as numerous as the shapes and colors they come in, and often, they are used beyond their intended purpose.
At base value the fidget spinner’s purpose is to spin, with more skilled users being able to branch out into small tricks like jumping it from one thumb to another. But a new trend on TikTok shows kids (and adults) putting different color pens through each hole and then spinning to create perfect rainbow circles.
So are these toys really about fidgeting, or are they just part of a trend?
As Scientific American points out, fidgeting has been around way before the spinners first appeared. If you’ve ever clicked a ballpoint pen over and over or drummed your nails over a keyboard, you’ve improvised your own fidget item.
Many people report that fidgeting with something helps them maintain or increase focus during long tasks, or to pay attention during meetings.
Similarly, other adults express that fidget spinners, stress balls and other fidget variants can provide some anxiety relief and help them to calm down.
Benefits of fidget toys
Kids and adults alike are able to relieve stress and anxiety just by keeping their hands occupied with a sensory toy. The science behind this is something researchers call “embodied self-regulation”, which is just a fancy way of saying that we use physical movement to manage our emotions and attention.
People may do little things or make small changes to affect their experience of the space they are in. Some people put on headphones at the office, others like to work at a standing desk where they can move around a little. These are all examples of embodied self-regulation.
So while fidget toys may not have a clinical application for people with ADHD or on the autism spectrum, they are definitely a harmless and helpful way for people to feel more relaxed.
Usage of popping and clicking fidget toys
Nowadays there’s so much hype around different forms of self-soothing. From ASMR to videos of people playing with slime, and indeed fidget spinners, there seems to be an appetite for all things weirdly satisfying.
There’s a calming aspect to something simple and repetitive that lends balance to an often over-stimulated world. We didn’t know when we designed it, but our trigger wallets actually function secondarily as a fidget toy! We’ve heard stories from customers that they can’t stop playing with the trigger, popping it up and pushing the cards back down over and over.So if you’re looking for a fidget toy and a new wallet, you’re in the right place. We know our wallets save time and money but we didn’t know they could save stress too!