I've always found untangling things and unknotting things and oddly calming activity. Going to have to credit my dad for that. When he was in the navy he learned all kinds of knots. Combine that with lots of patience and determination and you have someone who is good at teaching not only knots, but unknotting and detangling.
edit-- actually, now that I'm at the bottom of the basket, I'm realizing that the next step is the couch, which always ends up being a resting place for yarn, yarn project bags, finished objects, etc. I do *try* to clean up the couch at least once a week, and sometimes twics (don't fail over from fainting), but it always ends up with more yarn stuff by the end of the next week.
untangled (yes, untangled!!) yarn basket...hint of couch (you're next!) behind that
basket find-- crocheted heart, ready to be sewn onto *something*--proud I put it back in the basket and am continuing on my original quest, to find the grey yarn, instead of stopping this untangling to make something cute to sew the heart on to (hopefully, I'll find the grey soon, will finish current project and will get to make something for the little heart) haha
(and yes...I always stop the yarning to feed the children, wash the dishes, take out the trash, hug the children, etc etc. I even get outdoors in the sunshine every day, even if it's just to go to the mailbox, water the kitties/flowers, and feed the cats---all that counts as going outside)