10 ways to stay sane in a prison cell

American prisons have solitary confinement cells where you have to spend 23 hours a day in a room with only a bed and a toilet. Prison writer Michael J. Nichols, who was sentenced to life without parole for murder at the age of 19, spends a year in a cell feared as 'the Hole' among prisoners. I talked about my experiences.

My Top 10 Tips for Doing Time In 'the Hole' | The Marshall Project


The Potosi Correctional Center, Missouri's highest security level prison, where Nichols, who turned 50 in early 2022, is serving a 7-by-9-foot cement wall. I have a solitary confinement. The only thing inside the room was a cot, a washbasin, and a toilet, and the only thing leading outside was an iron door with a serving gutter and a small window. You can shower once a week, and you are only allowed one hour out of your cell each day.

Asked by a long-time pastor how to keep his composure in solitary confinement for advice to other inmates, Nicholls was sent to the Southeastern Correctional Center cell where he was held before coming to the Potosi Correctional Center. Here are the 10 habits I practiced during my year at .

1. Stay organized and don't waste time
Nichols didn't go to bed after breakfast each morning, but stayed up during the day.

2. motion
Exercise is one of the most productive activities you can do in solitary confinement. Therefore, Nichols inmate recommended that you set a goal that you can feel with your own eyes and exercise. For Nichols, for example, he started with 500 sit-ups and

leg raises a day, eventually 3,000, with the goal of getting six-pack abs. As a result, Nichols inmate seems to have got abs like a Spartan warrior.

3. read anything you can
Nicholls read bibles, Qurans, even dictionaries, whatever books he could get his hands on in his cell.

Four. learn new things
No matter how small, it's good to learn something new. In the case of Nicholls, in addition to reading through the dictionary as mentioned above, he increased his vocabulary, wrote positive words with his right hand and then rewrote them with his left hand, and acquired the skills to write neatly with both hands. .

Five. don't chat with other prisoners
While you can speak loudly to other prisoners in your cell, Nichols dared not engage in frivolous conversations. Because talking about politics, complaining about prisons, etc. will only lead to arguments. Instead, Nichols focused on educational conversations about psychology, history, business, and legal issues.

6. Don't give in to the guard's provocations
According to Nichols, prison guards will go to great lengths to anger prisoners in order to keep them in solitary confinement. Therefore, Nichols tried to observe the guards but not react hostilely. Some of the harassments involved depriving Nichols of his once-a-week recreational shower time. was washed.

In addition, Nichols inmate seems to call the prison staff '

Demogorgon ' in his mind.

7. don't miss the chance to leave the cell
Some prisoners in the cell are wary of the guards stealing their belongings, so some people do not leave the cell even if they are allowed to go out. To avoid what he termed 'solitary anxiety,' Nicholls made sure to get out of his cell whenever he had an excuse to do so, such as showering or seeing a doctor.

Inmate Nichols said, ``It's true that the Demogorgons steal things, but even if you take things from prisoners who often leave the cell, they won't be able to enter the cell even if you're away.'' Advised.

8. write a letter
Write to a loved one, a pastor, a library, or an organization that sends books to prisoners. Nicholls also wrote to courts and legislators about issues he felt were unfair.

9. file a complaint within an appropriate scope
For example, Nichols filed complaints about issues that seemed appropriate to protest, such as live wires sticking out of broken outlets and water leaking from ceilings. He has also filed similar complaints about the careless handling of legal documents, and has claimed the right to own religious books other than the Bible and Koran. In this way, prisoners who insist on what they should say may be avoided from harassing guards and may be released from the cell faster.

Ten. have faith
In order to practice his faith, Nichols inmate prayed and meditated daily, and practiced martial arts and breathing exercises. Regarding the importance of faith, Nichols said, ``For me, faith is the most important survival tool.It was because of faith that I was able to get through the worst of the cell.''

in Note, Posted by log1l_ks