A Closer Look at Boredom
Randi D. Ward is a retired, 37 year veteran English teacher from Georgia, USA, and a published author. She was named “Entrepreneur of the Year 2014” in the Education Industry by Worldwide Who’s Who and was profiled in its 2015 calendar. Her other awards include being the 2014-15 VIP Woman of the Year by National Association of Professional Women, a 2015 Delegate of the International Leadership Women’s Association, a 2015 Top Female Executive, a 2014 Pinnacle Professional Member of Continental Who’s Who, and an elite member of Strathmore Worldwide Who’s Who. Her current projects in Africa are World Peace Forest (Africa) in Egypt and Africa Nomads Conservation in Kenya. She is an honorary president of World Peace Forest (Africa) and the USA Regional Director for Africa Nomads Conservation. Her book is entitled Because I Believed in Me (My Egyptian Fantasy Came True).
The previous article “Oh, HowBored I Am!” discussed the definition of boredom and some of its possible causes. This article will concentrate on some positive things we can do to find our own remedies and solutions that can begin to end boredom and return us back to our normal selves.
Here are some general steps to get us started on the right track to a happier life. First, we must decide what it is we really want to do. If something is preventing this, then it is our job to figure out ways to find time to do this desired activity. That may involve coming up with some creative ideas. Secondly, do not just sit around and do nothing. Procrastinating is a complete waste of time. Begin by creating a list of your goals, desires, or passions. As I always say, “Anything is possible if you believe and work hard.”
Therefore, make this your wish list or “bucket list” as well. Then make a list of things that you do not want to do, but you know MUST be done. Next make a commitment to do at least one tiny task on the list, or if it is a big task, divide it into smaller parts and complete at least a part of it. Fifteen to twenty minute time frames are recommended. When this is accomplished, reward yourself by doing something you desire. One suggestion to minimize your boring environment is to get out and meet some people—either real friends or new friends. Do volunteer work at a local shelter or hospital. Help out a friend with a problem with which he is struggling. Teach something new to a friend. This may help to spark memories of how active you used to be and instantly renew lost energy. If none of these are possible or appealing ideas, many online chat line sites are available to meet interesting people who may share your interests or hobbies. Seek out inspiring, interesting, entertaining, passionate, and creative people with whom to spend time. It is important to start making meaningful connections.
If you are not the social type of person, then find something new to learn. Research a topic of interest online or in the local library, read a book you want to explore, write some poetry or a short story (This is one of my favorite ways!), or pull up Photoshop or some other program you may have and practice your artistic skills. You may find it helpful to meditate or to sit down and journal your thoughts and/or activities. Find gaps in your day when boredom seems to be at its highest point and schedule a new hobby you have always wanted to do. If all else fails, simply take a nap. Napping can help improve your levels of alertness and awareness and give you more energy and a renewed perspective on life. Find the strategies that work best for you through trial and error. However, avoid anything that is not truly an interest to you because it could become just another boring distraction that could put you in another “black hole” of boredom. Try to schedule your day with a combination of those dreaded things you must do and reward yourself when they are done with something special and fun—something motivational and beneficial.
To find a creative way to work through those tasks that are unpleasant, make a game out of it if possible. One way is to create some imaginary situations and then find new ways of completing the task to make it more enjoyable. Ask yourself fun questions like these
1. How would a small child do this task?
2. How would Mickey Mouse complete it?
3. How would a skilled scientist handle this problem?
4. What great adventure would Harry Potter or Superman invent?
5. If your dog or cat could do this, what would he or she do?
6. How could I make this task humorous or funny?
7. If this task was made into a cartoon, what would it look like?
8. What if my life depended upon getting this task done soon, what steps and actions would I need to take?
9. How could this task be accomplished faster and more easily if I worked with a partner?
10. What kind of music would inspire me to complete the task with more pleasure?
Try to think “outside the box” or outside the normal ways of doing the task. You might actually find the task could turn out to be enjoyable. Wouldn’t that be a nice result? Do something radical, exciting, unexpected, unpredictable, and drastic, and step outside your comfort zone. Push your boundaries far beyond what you imagined could be possible. What you could find could really delight and inspire you!!
With just a little bit of effort “sprinkled” with your own personal talents and creativity, we can all create our own personal recipes to greatly reduce and hopefully and eventually eliminate that frustrating thing we call boredom. Life should never be dull. We must all find ways to live life to the fullest and enjoy every minute of it.