What Kind Of Boredom Are You Experiencing?

By Alphonsus E.W

Bored baby

Most of us think we already know what it means to be bored, and we’ll look for just about any diversion to avoid the feeling.  At least we Africans wouldn’t want to admit to boredom being an affliction because it has a connotation of weakness.

‘Na Oyinbo disease be that’ we scoff. Recent research in regard to young adults and adolescents suggests that there may be a causal link between leisure boredom and high-risk health behaviors such as substance abuse as well as various forms of mental distress.

Findings support the hypothesis that adolescents and young adults who perceive their leisure to be unsatisfying, or in some way incomplete, may be at greater risk of engaging in patterns of leisure behavior that are detrimental to their physical and/or psychological well-being.

More research shows that, boredom is not a one-size-fits-all problem – what triggers or alleviates one person’s boredom won’t necessarily hold sway for someone else.

According to researchers publishing in the journal Motivation and Emotions, there are four well-established types of boredom:

  • Indifferent boredom (characterized by feeling relaxed and indifferent – typical coach potato, channel-surfing boredom)
  • Calibrating boredom (characterized by feeling uncertain but also receptive to change/distraction)
  • Searching boredom (characterized by feeling restless and actively searching for change/distraction)
  • Reactant boredom (characterized by feeling reactive, such as someone bored out of her mind storming out of a movie theater to find something better to do).
  • Apathetic boredom–the most troublesome of all. People exhibiting apathetic boredom are withdrawn, avoid social contact, and are most likely to suffer from depression. In fact, apathetic boredom could be considered a portal leading to depression.

The sort of remedy that would alleviate “searching bordeom”—actively pursuing change—would not help someone with apathetic boredom, because change itself represents too much of a threat. In this way, apathetic boredom feeds on itself, perpetuating over and over the same feelings that make it so difficult to escape. The uncertainty of change is just another reason to stay cloistered away.

Knowing your kind of boredom would help think up creative ways to beat the blues. I have been a victim of Apathetic Boredom and I can assure you that it is not the best feeling you can experience. Once I start feeling bored, before I realize it, I have quickly drifted into depression, the debilitating type which completely paralyzes and immobilizes. knowing this now, it is important you know those activities which if you engage in, snaps you out those foul moods. These activities include;

  • Drawing/ Doodling
  • Singing
  • Praying (This one works for me)
  • Getting up and leaving where you are
  • Calling/ texting loved ones and friends
  • Playing with a baby/ toddler
  • Hitting the sheets (yes, sex! *wink*)
  • Creative diversion (cooking, knitting, solving a crossword puzzle)

As a last resort, you can call me on phone, yes, me!