As we embark on week number two of life in the New Normal, I’ve been hearing lots of stories about people and families dealing with boredom. With school-aged kids off now on extended breaks, sports and activities cancelled, and many working out of make-shift home offices, some are experiencing something they haven’t in a long time… not much to do.
Boredom is something that is foreign to many of us in the modern era of a 24-7 workplace and our connections to smart phones, tablets, and streaming services. Seems the devices that were designed to eat into our limited spare time are now falling woefully short in an attempt to occupy the majority of our time.
As I’ve been reading up on the topic of boredom, I’ve learned something really interesting. Boredom breeds brilliance.
You see all the multi-tasking, jumping from job to job, and constant binging and buzzing of our smart phones requires your brain to expend energy. Since we only have so much energy through the course of our day, using up that energy on mundane tasks, takes away from our creativity.
When we are bored our brains go into a default setting that actually allows us to think beyond the daily tasks of the here and now and really explore ideas and options. The problem is our daily boredom time is now occupied with apps and checking emails. In fact, the average person touches their smartphone 300-500 times per day and has 75-125 separate interactions with it.
I think you would agree we are all addicted to our smart phones. It’s interesting that only drug dealers and tech companies refer to their customers and clients as “USERS”
As we grapple with boredom- start thinking of ways to use your down time productively vs destructively.
Here are a few low-tech things you can start doing that you may enjoy.
- Get out some of your old board games and puzzles.
- Exercise- or at least go take a walk outside.
- Clean out the cupboards.
- Finish up your taxes.
- Start that new hobby you’ve never had time for.
- Get creative with your cooking.
- Organize your office space.
- Go through your clothes and decide if you still like them or not.
- Clean and really detail your car.
- Go through the old boxes in your basement or storage space.
- Start keeping a journal of your experiences.
- Read those books you’ve been waiting to start.
- Learn something new.
- Call someone you haven’t spoken to in while- I bet they answer… they’re bored!
Please add you own personal ways to combat boredom. See how many you can discover without resorting to smart phones, television, video games and apps.
Thoughts for the week:
Boredom always precedes a period of great creativity. -Robert Pirsig
The answers we seek never come when our mind is busy. They come when the mind is still. -unknown
The cure for boredom is curiosity. There is no cure for curiosity. -D Parker
The chief enemy of creativity is good sense. -Pablo Picasso
A pessimist sees difficulty in every opportunity. An optimist sees opportunity in every difficulty. -Winston Churchill
Boredom is an important function because pushing through it can unleash creativity. -Amy Dickinson
Cheers to you, your health and your success
One Quarter Turn at a Time