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What is Boredom?

books Updated: Jul 25, 2009 22:23 IST

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A phrase commonly encountered in everyday life is “I’m bored.” We’ve said it ourselves and have heard it being said...

Why do we get bored? And what is the solution to this ever-growing phenomenon called boredom? Boredom is a state of mind where nothing appeals to us, where nothing excites us…. Most often, people get bored when they are straddled with tasks, which they don’t like, or don't want to do. One way of avoiding boredom is to learn to say no, whenever possible… .

Also, boredom is often the starting point for inspirational ideas, and some of the earth shattering discoveries and inventions have happened when people who were responsible for these had nothing to do, and were in a state of extreme boredom... Make your boredom a rejoicing, a time to think, plan, introspect, and come with brilliant workable ideas, reconnect with others and with yourself...

Boredom or constantly feeling bored can mean two things. One, after all these years of existence on earth, be it twenty, forty or sixty years, you have not known your true self... So if you are bored and don't know why, maybe it is time for some deep introspection and meditation, in an effort to know yourself.

The other reason many of us complain of being bored, and this is especially true of children, is as an attention seeking measure. We hope that those to whom we complain will drop everything and pamper and mollycoddle us, will give us more of their time and will attend to us...

Like everything, boredom too has its benefits, if you use the time effectively and creatively. Otherwise, you can keep complaining that you are bored, and endure the one and only life that God has given you, in a bored, mundane fashion. Feeling bored is also a choice — no one is stopping you from going ahead and doing all those things that could make your life interesting or exciting, except yourself.

(An excerpt from Spirituality Bytes by P.V. Vaidyanathan, Readworthy Publications, 2009, Rs 195)