What is boredom and how to deal with it?

Boredom is normally seen as having nothing to do. We see it as an unpleasant or uncomfortable emotional state when we lack interest and find it difficult to concentrate on what we are doing.

We all suffer from boredom at some points in our life, 30 -90 % of us experience it daily at some point. Men are generally more bored than women.

Here are a few main causes of boredom:

1. Monotony. Boredom is like mental fatigue so repetitive jobs or task where we lack interest in what we are doing create boredom. Anything that is repetitive or something that requires our continual attention like waiting in a queue as the same effect. So too much of the same thing or too little stimulation will create the same feeling.

2. Lack of movement or progress. This is when we become involved in our task, we get in the zone. Our abilities are matched to the job in hand. When we can see and achieve our goals and recognise this we are engaged more. If the task does not really challenge us, we become bored and if it too difficult we become worried and anxious.

3. the need for excitement Some of us are prone to boredom than others. If we are normally on the go 24/7 and are physically active and socially engaged much of the time then when we are forced to stop such as the current lock-down or when we are injured or ill, these people will become bored far more quickly. These people can no longer get their adrenaline fix and the resulting mental and emotional stimulation associated with it.

4. staying focused. When we are bored, we find it harder to focus, this creates a vicious circle, we lose interest because we cannot concentrate and become more disengaged with the subject in hand.

5. Emotional Awareness If we don’t really know what we want then we are more likely to feel bored. Another vicious circle, if we don’t know what it is, we want to feel happy or fulfilled we become even more bored.

6. Inner Amusement Skills. When we cannot amuse ourselves, we more reliant upon external sources of stimulation and we become dependent upon these external sources () we will become more and more dependant the more we lose the internal process and thinking of how to be creative in ways to entertain ourselves. Let’s jump straight to the obvious points of game consoles, smartphones, and constant TV.

7. no Autonomy. When we are bored, we often/usually feel trapped, we cannot achieve or do what we think we would like to do. How often do your children complain of being bored because that can’t go out or go on the game’s consoles, they trapped.

8. The Role of Culture In many ways, boredom is a modern luxury (Spacks, 1996). Boredom was literally non-existent until the late 18th century. It came into being as the Enlightenment was giving way to the Industrial Revolution. Early in human history, when our ancestors had to spend most of their days securing food and shelter, boredom wasn’t an option.

Understanding our boredom can be a great way to helping deal with it, understanding and acknowledging the state you are in.

Music is a great boredom buster, it can change our mood, crowd out the monotony of a task. Remember boredom is often not a lack of things to do but a lack of things you WANT to do.

We come here alone and we go alone. Learn to enjoy your own company. Notice the good things about yourself instead of seeking perfection. Treat yourself with love, respect and kindness, we often expect these from others but fail to give ourselves.

Do something charitable, something for somebody else. Doing good will make you feel good.

Are you bored or maybe disconnecting from life to avoid something? You could be avoiding an emotion, sadness, anger or fear, or hiding from a difficult marriage or some situation you simply don’t want to face. Often, we simply “switch off” to avoid the feelings and become disengaged with life and our thoughts and feelings.

We often don’t do this consciously, so you need to become aware if nothing seems obvious just gradually and gently review your life. Something may be known to already or it something that may gradually come to your attention. If you’re trying to avoid there’s probably a good reason, so be careful, take your time. At this point you may talk to a friend or a counsellor to get support.

Think about diet and exercise, both have huge effects on our mood and emotions. Check your alcohol and caffeine intake and consider how your physical activity might be reduced by lock-down. We don’t always recognise how far we walk around our offices, factories and warehouses and many people haven’t found a replacement or substitute for 1 or 2 gym classes they were doing each week.

Take Care


© What is boredom and how to deal with it?