Time and again you feel bored. What is the reason for that? You're already trying everything not to be idle. But you still reach for your smartphone to chat or play games out of sheer boredom. You can't stare at the wall all the time - it won't make the time go by any faster. If you're bored several times a day, something seems wrong. Learn more about boredom here: Where it comes from and what you can do about it.
Introduction: The phenomenon of boredom
What is the definition of boredom, anyway? Maybe you'll feel less bored if you know that. Obviously, this feeling occurs when everything seems monotonous to you. You lack an incentive, an occupation. In fact, this refers to Understanding boredom to this lack of stimulation - whether it comes from inside or outside.
How much is boredom part of modern life? Are we bored because we have too much time on our hands? Mainly, it probably has to do with the fact that our daily activities don't satisfy us. You actually want to do something, but you don't have the opportunity right now - or maybe you're just too lazy.
There are many activities open to you. You just don't feel like doing them because you don't feel like it. Sure, instead of being bored, you could do the laundry, clean the kitchen or read a book. But you're too bored to do that ... sounds paradoxical, but in such a lazy moment nothing can satisfy you.
In what ways are you bored? Does boredom come when you have to listen to a dull lecture or watch a movie that is difficult to understand? Then it is "State Boredom". You have the feeling that time drags on endlessly. But at some point, even the longest presentation or production will end, and you can become active again: Then the boredom immediately fades away.
If you are often bored, it may be due to your personal character. "Trait Boredom" refers to how susceptible someone is to boredom - and how pronounced this feeling is.
Causes and triggers of boredom
Personality traits are often responsible for boredom. How do you deal with it when you're bored? Does the feeling of time creeping by annoy you, do you do something about it, or do you fall into depressive thoughts? In fact, psychologists are still researching how depressed moods relate to boredom. Does depression lead more to boredom or is it the other way around?
Whatever the case, people who think their lives are boring obviously get bored more quickly. Bored people seem to change partners more often and are more prone to alcohol and drugs.
For example, people who get bored quickly are difficult to get excited about. They need significantly stronger stimuli to develop an honest interest in a matter. In other words, enthusiastic people hardly give themselves a chance to get bored. On the other hand, those who need strong stimulation - a kick - find it difficult to be convinced even by bungee jumping or similarly exciting activities. The small situations in everyday life can't even compete with the boring mood of such a person.
Those who find it difficult to assess their own feelings or ignore them also have a tendency to boredom. Trying something new seems so elaborate, and afterwards it's just another boring story... Motivating such people is really difficult!
It is said that a satisfying activity helps against boredom. Another motivation is to avoid problems, pain or negative emotions.
An example: Your partner suggests going for a hike and then having something to eat - first the physical activity, then the well-deserved refreshment. But before that, there's the drive to the hiker's parking lot and the look at the uncertain weather. So the possible problems cause negative feelings and you fear that you will be bored.
Concentration problems can also trigger boredom. If you're not concentrating, the meeting will pass you by and you'll be bored - of course, you won't notice much.
There are also the external factors that can cause boredom:
Understimulation - there is not enough to do and thus the brain remains unoccupied,
Fatigue - you lack the strength to concentrate,
too much free time,
few social contacts,
The psychology of boredom
In his research on boredom, the Canadian neuropsychologist James Danckert the typical lack of self-control in people who get bored quickly and extensively. But only when you have control over your own emotions and actions can you combat the boring phases.
This means that with the necessary self-regulation, you will succeed in keeping yourself busy and banishing boredom. If you control yourself and seek out specific tasks, you won't be bored either. This also includes a high level of attention.
In the meantime, experts are systematically studying the interrelationships of motivation,Boredom and behavior. The extent of the phenomenon also plays a role.
At school and at work, performance drops significantly when boredom sets in. This sounds logical: if you're bored, you don't pay proper attention, so mistakes are inevitable. Psychologists believe that boredom is a warning signal, especially when it occurs frequently. Are you bored every day? Then something is wrong and you should do something about it.
Boredom can change personal behavior - and often into the negative. Depending on their character, those affected become aggressive, depressed or develop addictive behavior. Others become susceptible to obscure theories.
Sometimes something positive also emerges from boredom. Those who are in control of themselves may look for a creative hobby or discover their personal strengths.
Dealing with boredom: strategies and tips
On the weekend, when you want to enjoy your free time, you suddenly feel bored. What's that all about - you want to enjoy yourself! And now this negative feeling. How can you get into the flow now and banish the boredom?
The practical ideas for overcoming boredom are many and varied:
Declutter and clean up,
Playing board games with family or friends,
cook or bake together,
Play sports or go for a walk,
Read or learn.
In addition to the practical tips, there are helpful Strategies on a psychological basis. So it can be useful to endure the boredom for a while. Do you hear something - the wind driving through the leaves outside, or your own inner voice? Think about why you are bored and what triggers this feeling in you. Is your current situation getting to you? Is your job over- or under-challenging you? How are things going in your relationship and with your friends? Do you want to change something?
Through self-reflection, you get to know your own feelings and motivations. This enables you to plan better. In the best case, you will recognize the meaning in your activities - or you will change your situation. You are bored in your daily job? Maybe you should think about looking for a new job. Your partner is annoying and you feel bored and controlled by others? A change might be helpful here as well.
Boredom as an opportunity: the positive aspects
Creative works and inventions often emerge from quiet periods that almost feel boring. In fact, boredom can stimulate your creativity and motivation. It becomes the impulse that gives you new ideas. Let it inspire you to try something new. It doesn't have to be a groundbreaking idea. Get to know yourself better and put an end to the boring hours by developing yourself.
For your personal growth, you may ask yourself the following question: If you could wish for anything and every possibility was open to you, what would be your greatest, your most beautiful goal? Feel free to expand on this. What do you really want to achieve? After all, this is about your own personal goals.
In our Vision Challenge Workbook you will find the necessary support: With only three simple exercises you will be able to visualize your energy, recognize your desires and define your biggest goal! In this way, you will recognize what brings you forward and strengthen your self-confidence and thus also your self-regulation. Train effective habits against boredom and be ready for an inspiring, creative and successful life!
A guide for your future
- Find your true vision
Do you know what really drives you at the core? With just three simple exercises, you will be able to visualize your energy, identify your desires, and define your biggest goal!