A long time ago when I was in a day hospital trying to recover from this that and the other, the head nurse suggested that I might use some distraction to reduce my anxiety. He thought that when an anxiety episode started that I should ping/slap the band against my skin and that this would help distract my attention from the fear.
After trying this a few times and even in my burned down state, I realised that I was pinging the band harder and harder without any noticeable effect. In fact I think that it stoked me up a little further and that it was bordering on self harm. You see for me at that time and in my vulnerable state it was an easy thought process to go from an elastic band around the wrist to slamming my fingers in the door or something similar. I took the band off and tried other things instead.
My point is that distraction is good as long as it isn’t harmful and it must be in conjunction with character building and change. If it’s not then all we are doing is running for the rest of our lives. Over the years as I have become happier with myself, some of the ‘distractions’ that I have had, have turned into hobbies and interests. This can only be an added bonus to my life.