When you are bored you are probably committing a crime, so said Jean Baudrillard (RIP), a sociologist, philosopher, and cultural theorist.
Here are his exact words:
Perhaps the world’s second worst crime is boredom. The first is being a bore.– Jean Baudrillard
Boredom is a real social problem in the 21st century as reflected in the lack of mental awareness, and poor attention. It is much like Thaasophobia, which is a reflection of our fear of sitting!
But boredom goes a step further.
Here is how Wikipedia defines it:
In conventional usage, boredom is an emotional and occasionally psychological state experienced when an individual is left without anything in particular to do, is not interested in their surroundings, or feels that a day or period is dull or tedious.
Since it affects both our physical and mental states it can also lead to binge eating, substance abuse, daydreaming, and a feeling of hopelessness.
We all somehow catch the boredom fever. After, we live in the 21st century!
And yet, boredom can be avoided.
With so much to do and plenty of stuff happening around us, it is PERHAPS inexcusable to experience boredom. At least according to a famed French author!
I am never bored; to be bored is an insult to one’s self.― Jules Renard
Here is what leads to boredom!
Yes, boredom sucks and you probably suck when you are bored. The truth is, so much is happening in your life when you find yourself in that state of mind and body breakdown.
Just in case you are trying to figure out why you are bored, read on:
1. Boredom is a modern-day predicament!
Yes, boredom was unheard of up until industrialization, urbanization, and technology became part of our lives.
Our ancestors lived their lives working and did not have the luxury of daydreaming. Life was simple and all a man had to do was work HARD on the farms and feed his family. The wife cooked food and the children ran around playing all day.
By evening, everyone was tired, and apart from elders telling a few stories, the next obvious stop was the bedroom!
The cycle was repeated the day after, the week after, the month after, and the year after. It was a lifetime of WORK, FOOD, BABIES, STORIES, and SLEEP.
In the wake of industrialization, which first happened in the UK in the 1800s, a lot of things changed. Men traveled NEAR and FAR away from home to work, and here they discovered new modes of livelihood and entitlement.
Fast forward to the 21st century and we now have to deal with the evolved lifestyles and entitlement. Besides, there are emerging challenges in globalization, urbanization, and technology.
These have changed the way we work, live, and value our success and failures!
The modern-day mindset thinks beyond simple family roles and challenges and instead is hypnotized by monetary accumulation, pride, and vanity.
2. You are probably lazy & choosy!
To the layman, boredom is the opposite of busyness and is a sign of unused potential. Your productive potential is sadly going to waste.
Yes, you are lazy and choosy about what you can and not do!
Today, you can WORK and entertain yourself with the help of technology devices and other tools instead of daydreaming. With new innovations, tools, and challenges, there is definitely room and choices for everyone to do something
It is also true that the modern-day man is selective about what he wants to do and the lifestyle he daydreams about. The probability of achieving these can be daunting and damning, and leave him stressed, daydreaming, and bored.
3. You have little control over your life
While it is true some people are habitually bored more than others, it is also true that uncontrolled boredom is a state of mind that gets worse with time.
Your mind is restless because you expect too much and probably not achieving anything you have imagined all your life.
Sometimes you don’t see any reason and desire to do what you are doing. This is probably because you are doing the wrong job, you are procrastinating, and don’t really know what you want!
When you have trouble concentrating at work, it is because your mind is busy daydreaming, and you are attempting to keep your brain occupied.
All the above can lead to anger, depression, anxiety, and ultimately, a sad boring life.
When this happens, it is probably time to reinvent yourself, quit your job, or even change cities.
Otherwise, boredom can make you so disappointed with life and even court suicidal ideas.
4. You are not creative!
Yes, we have been told countless times that boredom is an opportunity to supercharge our creativity.
It is more of a search for neural stimulation that isn’t satisfied, according to Sandi Mann, a psychology lecturer and author of The Upside of Downtime: Why Boredom Is Good.
Bill Gates too, agrees,
I choose a lazy person to do a hard job. Because a lazy person will find an easy way to do it.Bill Gates
But again, maybe you are not being creative at all and instead use boredom as an excuse to wander away from productivity and responsibilities.
In another study,
boredom did not universally increase creativity for a product development task; instead, only those individuals with a high learning goal orientation (LGO), high need for cognition (NOC), high openness to experience, and high internal locus of control (LOC) showed a significant increase in creativity when feeling bored.
Yes, you are boring if you are not using boredom for purposes of creativity and to change your boring life!
5. You have no social life
Lack of friends can have a very serious impact on your life. Being lonely, and having no one to talk to makes you feel hopeless and useless.
Elsewhere, you probably do the same thing every day, follow a strict social routine, and have the same friends. This routine worked well for our ancestors, but will not work for you in the 21st century.
Ultimately you get tired of what you do because things that gave you pleasure, in the beginning, become monotonous and boring!
Now, this is a recipe for trouble especially if you work in the same place and hardly move out!
A lack of social connectedness means few people and friends to discuss issues that matter in life, and tricks to handle the emerging challenges thrown at you in the 21st century.
Get out of your ‘comfort zone’ when you are bored!
Of course, there is little comfort in boring except when it gives you TIME to think. It is only good when it helps you can sort out your life and challenges.
Otherwise, boredom is a wake-up call that something is wrong and you need to get it sorted out.
It may mean getting out of that ‘comfort zone’, or whatever you call it, and re-evaluate your world, discover new people, new opportunities, and even emerging quirky challenges.
If however boredom is caused by sickness, drug abuse, and social anxiety problems, you probably need to see a doctor.