Updated: Dec 16, 2020
Boredom is emerging as a critical problem as people are forced by ethics and civil duty to stay home to slow down the wildfire-like spread of coronavirus. As more and more people find themselves home, cut off from the chaotic pace of the outside commercial world, they find themselves facing endless hours of nothingness. Though there are all kinds of online jobs, conferences, and academic lessons, we save up on a lot of our time by avoiding transport, the long queues of traffic, and the hours of rest that used to become critical after coming home on a stressful day. We also had to give up on the social engagements, which used to make our nights pass swiftly. Moreover, we used to find ourselves so exhausted with school and balancing personal and professional life that usually sunset would find us crashed on our beds or loungers dallying into a well-deserved slumber.
The problem with boredom is that it instills a sense of lackluster. This feeling later develops into bouts of depressive symptoms or compels us to become irrational seeking temporary pleasure either through indulging in drugs or substituting excitement in our life through pornography. These vices provide short-term relief from this feeling of being purposeless, and they are not effectively a cure for boredom.
If you're considering an answer on how to deal with boredom, do not look any further. It's all on you and how you choose to invest yourself in your engagements to be meaningfully involved in productive activities.
1. Remind yourself of purpose
The key reason why some of us feel bored despite being actively engaged is that we lose our sense of purpose. Even when doing chores worthy of our time and attention like taking care of our kids or performing our jobs, we are often overwhelmed by listlessness. In such a case, we need to continually remind ourselves that doing something is critical and contributes to the bigger frame of things.
2. Find a routine
A chaotic lifestyle can often lead to phases of boredom, and thus it is essential to work around a routine. When we are following a tightly managed schedule, we have a sense of purpose throughout the day. For example, naptime should be immediately followed by laundry and then ironing, etc. This would keep you running instead of feeling lost.
3. Listen to your energy levels
One of the major mistakes we make while warding off boredom is doing too much. We squeeze so many activities in our schedule that we feel fatigued. When our body is taxed beyond measure, we again lose our sense of purpose since there is nothing we value above our own physical and mental health. Thus, we question whether our round the clock chores are more important than our mental well-being, and the answer is always a big No! The experts recommend a timetable that balances activities with leisure times not to tire ourselves out.
4. Pattern your schedule with weekly activities.
Another essential tip is to design your schedule in a way that each day is different from the next. Monotony breeds boredom. When hurled at you as part of your daily schedule, even fun and exciting activities become burdening. The wise plan is to include them twice or thrice in the week to maintain your excitement for it.
5. Keep yourself excited with new activities
Following the cue from the previous advice, repetitive activities may fail to provide the excitement that you expected from them. Consequently, it would be best if you adopted new hobbies or activities every month. If one month you have gone for yoga, the other month, you should try Zumba. Also, if possible, you can try to give up bad habits, e.g., stop smoking through smoke cessation medication or control anger through anger management counseling.
6. Balance physical and mental activities.
When undertaking hobbies and activities, you must balance physical exertion and mental activities. If your job centers around physical duress, fill in your spare time with meditative activities that provide spiritual enrichment and vice versa.
7. Undertake training courses to build on your self-esteem
This ongoing pandemic offers the most significant opportunity for enriching your skills and educational repertoire. There are many free online courses available from reputable institutes that allow you to harness new skills to maintain pace with a fast upgrading world. This will also help you feel confident and ease your way to the promotion you are looking forward to.
8. Reward yourself with pleasuring activities
It's not always conducive to sanction yourself against guilty pleasures. It is impossible to be productive every waking hour, and it is critical to acknowledge your humanity. Hence, do not penalize yourself for giving in to a movie night or a snack party. If you feel relaxed cooking exotic meals, do not blame yourself for making a dinner spread occasionally.
9. Socialize with your friends and family
When we talk about engaging ourselves in our favorite activities, we are also hinting towards socializing. Even in these troubling times, when social engagements mean risking your health, you could stay connected to your friends and families through social networks, audio calls, and video calls. It helps you feel loved and provides a much-needed break from your duties, but it also enables you to connect with other people who may also be feeling bored and locked into their surroundings. You could together communicate on effective ways to overcome boredom because who better to advise you than your own best friend.
Also, it is the ideal time to spend with your family with whom you are cooped up. We usually ignore each other's presence except at dining tables when food serves as an incentive for us to connect. But now quarantine provides you an ideal solution to create meaningful connections with your loved ones. It's as good as the maternity and paternity leave you so needed to develop a bond with your newborns. Consider it to be another shot at doing the same. Adopt healthy activities that you can do together as a family. It could involve story time, exercising, cooking, or cleaning the house (spring cleaning), or looking at old family pictures and planning for your next big vacation.
10. Make journal entries to create a sense of accomplishment
At times, despite following all these tips, we are left with a feeling of being unproductive. That does not mean you are not doing enough. It means you are not keeping an account of all that you do. Every night before sleeping, make a journal entry of everything you accomplished within that day so that you feel calm and at peace when you hit the bed. These accomplishments can include anything, such as attending an online co-parenting counseling session or even baking a cake.
Whoever you are and anything you may do, know that you are an essential part of your family, and knowing so would help infuse a sense of empowerment in you, and this is the best strategy for not being bored. Repetitive tasks can infuriate anybody, but if you discipline yourself with other past times and meditative activities, you have the key to staying content and happy with your busy life. COVID '19 offers you the best time to work on yourself and strengthen your mental core to establish a better lifestyle once the world reopens itself.