Sometimes, feeling a little bored can be a good thing. It may mean you’ve slowed down and are taking the time to stop and smell the roses. Paring down your schedule can help rejuvenate you. Repetition isn’t necessarily a bad thing, either. Going to the same office every day or cleaning your house each Friday may give you a sense of security.
However, sometimes, too much time and not enough to do — or doing the same things constantly — can lead to a more troublesome kind of boredom. When boredom prevents you from getting the most out of life or — worse yet — leaves you feeling down, you may want to assess why you’re having these feelings. Let’s discuss reasons you may think life is a bit dull and ways to fix it.
Surprising reasons you might be bored
If boredom feels like it snuck up on you, it may be challenging to pinpoint what’s gone wrong. However, there are a few under-the-radar reasons why you may consider life a tad dull these days.
Your life is too repetitive
You may have heard that sitting too much can fatigue your muscles. Boredom can, in essence, exhaust your mind. If you’re doing the same thing over and over, life can become too predictable and boring, particularly if you lack interest in what you’re doing.
You’re being micromanaged
If you feel like you don’t have the freedom to make your own decisions at work or home, you may start to feel constrained. For example, perhaps your boss asks for three check-ins on a long-term project per day, or a partner keeps nagging you to clean pots and pans a certain way. This boredom may have you feeling disengaged at your job or with your family because you don’t have any license to perform tasks in a way that feels authentic to you.
You need more meaning in your life
Maybe you subconsciously (or consciously) feel out of place at work or within your group of friends. A 2017 study found that people who said they were bored also felt like they lacked meaning in their lives. You may need to evaluate if you fit in and whether your daily activities provide actual value to your life.
The dangers of boredom
Boredom isn’t a trivial feeling. It can have some harmful consequences. Here are a few:
- Burnout: Experts say that repetitive work can lead to burnout. It’s likely not a stretch to say that a monotonous lifestyle does, too, particularly when you consider that boredom is essentially a form of mental fatigue. Think about it: You would be physically burnt out if you ran a marathon every day. It makes sense that you’d be emotionally burned out if you performed the same tasks for the same micromanaging boss each day.
- Emotional struggles: Boredom may contribute to feelings of depression, and neurologist Dr. Judy Willis writes that boredom can cause us to suffer emotionally.
- Substance abuse: When people are bored, they may be more likely to engage in substance abuse.
How to beat back boredom
Sometimes, boredom may leave you feeling disengaged and hopeless. However, there are some strategies to try if you want help breaking out of your rut.
Try something new
If repetition is causing your boredom, mix it up a little. Hit up a new restaurant, sign up for a class, or take up a hobby you’ve always wanted to try, such as painting or golf. Not only will you hopefully have some fun, but you may also enhance your thinking skills, experts say.
Talk to the micromanager in your life
It can be hard to tell a superior or loved one that they are hurting us. However, if micromanagement is boring you and leaving you feeling disengaged, it may be worth approaching the person. Together, you may come to a solution. Being proactive and updating a boss before they ask can help you feel less micromanaged, experts advise.
Getting outside can do wonders for your mental health and leave you feeling reinvigorated. Some great anti-boredom outside activities include gardening, swimming, walking in the park, or hiking on a nature trail. If you need a massive change of scenery, consider booking a trip somewhere. Travel is opening back up, and studies indicate travel boosts happiness.
Get enough sleep
You need energy to be able to get up, go, and break out of your rut. Sleep is important. Make sure you’re getting enough each night. Experts generally recommend you get about eight hours of shut-eye.
There’s no need to always be on the go, and having a routine can be good for you. However, sometimes, the monotony of everyday life can lead to boredom. A lack of rest and a micromanaging supervisor can also leave you feeling blah. While a little boredom never hurt anyone (that we know of), too much of it can lead to job dissatisfaction, burnout, and mental health issues. Start by figuring out why you’re feeling bored. Then, map a strategy for getting out of your rut. Perhaps you need to have a conversation with your boss. You may also find yourself plotting a job change or in need of a way to get more sleep at night. Activities like hiking and traveling can also help you feel refreshed. Find what works for you, and you’ll be out of your rut in no time.
BlissMark provides information regarding health, wellness, and beauty. The information within this article is not intended to be medical advice. Before starting any diet or exercise routine, consult your physician. If you don’t have a primary care physician, the United States Health & Human Services department has a free online tool that can help you locate a clinic in your area. We are not medical professionals, have not verified or vetted any programs, and in no way intend our content to be anything more than informative and inspiring.
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