We constantly seek new information to keep our mind's sharp.
We've all been bored on the job at least once in our lives, but that boredom is actually very old human wiring. We constantly seek out new information to keep our minds sharp, and when tasks get repetitive we get bored and move on. But what if you can't move on? What if the tasks are your job and you have to repeat them day after day to keep a roof over your head? That, says London Business School professor Dan Cable, is why boredom has become an epidemic. Our brains aren't used to staying in their lanes, so perhaps that boredom is not a bug after all, but a feature. Dan's new book is Alive at Work.
Being bored is great. It's where we come up with our best ideas, and how we become better people by being able to mentally solve our biggest personal problems. So why are we destroying boredom with our phones?
Are cell phones destroying creativity? Podcast host, author, and relentless examiner of the modern human condition Manoush Zomorodi believes that they are. When we are bored, the brain enters what is called "default mode"—think about the way your mind wanders when you're in the shower or doing the dishes. This might not seem like valuable time but our creativity really kicks into high gear. We now use up a lot of that boredom-time by poking at our phones, and in doing so are starving ourselves of a main source of inspiration. This boredom issue goes beyond simple creativity: boredom is also useful for autobiographical planning and being able to solve big problems. Manoush posits that maybe we should put down the phones and start being bored more often. Her latest book is Bored and Brilliant: How Spacing Out Can Unlock Your Most Productive and Creative Self .
Boredom has benefits. New research finds that device-free solitude deactivates high arousal emotions while reducing stress and promoting relaxation.
Kids say the darndest things. They're also far more adept at workflow management than adults are. What can we learn from them?
Most likely, you don’t need to be convinced in the utility of perseverance - the ability to stick to a boring task, despite the fact that the Facebook tab is blinking with notifications in your browser. Implementing tactics that help us resist distractions in order to work towards long-term goals is crucial for success. Now, researchers have found an interesting strategy that has been proven to work for kids - imagining they're Batman. The study was published in the journal Child Development.
Is there such a thing as boredom, or is it an all-encompassing term for a variety of root causes like apathy, frustration, or depression?
Eleven times every week I teach yoga and fitness classes in Los Angeles. Both formats feature varying levels of intensity, though the last few minutes in each are dedicated to shifting into parasympathetic mode to calm the flood of hormones and neurochemicals keeping students’ nervous systems prepared for action. No matter how challenged they are during class, this stretch of time proves to be the hardest for many.