5 Ways to Turn Boredom into Productivity

We have easier access to each other and the world’s information right now than ever before, and yet many of us still sometimes find ourselves “bored out of our mind.” Boredom is that weird feeling you get when you have the energy to complete a task but have no tasks. Well, at least that’s what we tell ourselves.
Next time you sense boredom creeping into your life, try one or more of the 5 ideas listed below, and let me know how that worked for you!

  • Start exercising

There are few pieces of advice I can give that are as potently packed with potential as starting a regular exercise regimen. It will change your appearance, yes, but it will do SO MUCH MORE than that. Your physical and mental health can radically change just by incorporating exercise into your life.
In June 2018, I began to regularly stretch, do cardio, and lift weights after a couple of years of doing practically nothing active. Not only did it allow me to lose over 60 pounds and add a good bit of muscle in just 10 months, but it also allowed my mental clarity and productivity to skyrocket. You may very well find that, not only does regular exercise NOT take away from your other activities, but it actually enhances them! A healthy person can enjoy life in ways which an unhealthy person can not- remember that! Exercise isn’t the only metric of health, but it sure is a big one.

  • Write a To-Do List

How many times have you wasted 2-3 hours in a day, and also not accomplished everything you needed to? That used to be the norm for me, and it wasn’t until I began scheduling my day that I saw this trend drastically decrease. While I personally recommend that everyone tries out scheduling your day, or “time blocking” (link my blog post), I’m not a big proponent of any one-size-fits-all method, so try different things and do what works best for you!
If you aren’t quite ready to start time blocking, then your first step should be to start writing to-do lists every day so that you can easily keep track of your tasks and responsibilities. Find yourself bored? Odds are, there’s something you can do- but you just don’t know what it is! Writing a to-do list is a key to making sure that boredom does not happen until after all of your important tasks have been completed. If boredom DOES set in, then it can also help to use that time to write the list. Whichever works for you, works for you! Again, there’s no perfect way to do it- the only incorrect way is to not try.

  • Pursue a positive hobby

“Positive” can refer to an entire orchestra of possibilities- meaning many different things for different people. Essentially, you can ask yourself the question, “Does this hobby make me a better person?” If the answer is yes, or at least neutral, then maybe that’s a great hobby to pursue in your free time!
Have you been wanting to start playing that guitar you haven’t picked up in 10 years? Got an old car in the garage that needs to be fixed? Do you have great ideas that you want to share with the world?? All of these are examples of ways you can become more productive in your free time, or just when you’re bored. If there’s that 1 thing you have wanted to do that you don’t think you have the time for, then begin auditing the amount of time you spend on social media and watching TV/Netflix. This isn’t about lecturing you on your media consumption, but rather us being real with ourselves so that we can make time for things that matter.

  • Eliminate clutter

“Clutter” can take the form of many different things, but all of it can weigh on our minds without us even realizing it. Clutter can be that cabinet you haven’t cleaned in 6 years or the 10,000 unread emails in your inbox, but it can be equally as damaging in your mind. We have access to so much information that it can be almost impossible to turn off unless we do so intentionally.
Life is difficult enough without unnecessary weight on our shoulders. If you’re feeling bored, take some time to first de-clutter your mind (try Headspace), and then you can start sifting through that messy cabinet.

  • Let your current boredom tell a bigger story

Now, THIS is when it gets real. If you find yourself bored often, then perhaps you should be asking yourself “Why am I bored?” If it’s constant, then you may not be challenging yourself to the level of which you are capable. Every single day doesn’t have to be filled to the brim with activities, but if you’re finding that you have several unfilled hours every day, then it may be time for some self-improvement tactics!
Start reading, get productive, finally get back on the piano, or do whatever it is that you’ve been putting off. TODAY can be the day you decide to become more productive! It simply requires you to be real with yourself, begin assessing how you spend your time, and then take some small steps in the right direction.

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