Boredom is something we’ve all had to become more accustomed to this last year. With many of us spending more time at home, and gaining time back usually spent commuting to school or work, a lot of us are finding ourselves bored. So whether you’ve got new time on your hands that you want to use productively, or find yourself with a spare few hours, here are 11 things to do when you’re bored, depending on your mood.
If you’re feeling artsy…
We all have creative energy inside us just waiting to come out, plus getting crafty is great for alleviating feelings of anxiety and stress. Being creative comes in so many different forms, from painting to sewing and cooking. If it involves thinking of new ideas and expressing yourself, then it’s creative.
1. Do some painting
Painting isn’t just for people who can paint like Frida Kahlo – it’s for everyone! From abstract styles to still life, there are tonnes of ways to paint suited to your own abilities and style. And if you’re really a rookie and want to paint without the pressure, try a paint by numbers kit (or even a custom paint-by number painting made from your own photo like this one). They’re super easy, relaxing and allow you to create something amazing without as much effort or pressure of painting from scratch.
2. Get a puzzle out
We all have fond memories of playing with jigsaw puzzles as children, but puzzles aren’t just for kids! Getting stuck into a jigsaw puzzle provides hours of fun away from any screens and gets your mind stimulated. It makes a great group activity too, so if you want to spend any quality time with a loved one – here’s your chance. Plus, nothing beats that feeling of satisfaction when you slot that last piece in place and your puzzle is complete.
3. Try your hand at calligraphy
When you’re bored, it’s a great time to try something completely different and new. With the gift that is the internet and YouTube, you can find introduction videos to pretty much any creative hobby. And calligraphy is one that you can try right away. Unlike other hobbies such as painting where you need the right tools before you can paint, you can start out in calligraphy with any old pen.
4. Do some cooking
Cooking is another fantastic creative activity that gives you something yummy to eat at the end too. So whether you want to try a new recipe out or freestyle with whatever you’ve got in the kitchen, creating a dish, cake or treat out of your ingredients is not only rewarding, but an expression of your tastes too!
If you’re feeling productive…
For those of you who are always busy and find some time that you want to make the most of, why not target that to-do list? Here are a few activities to do when you’re feeling productive.
5. Organise your space
Tidying up is a surprisingly fun thing to do with your spare time that can breathe some new life into your space. Try reorganizing your cupboards or shelves to try something new, or move some furniture around for a new look. You could also go through your belongings and declutter – things always build up over time and having a clear out can be great.
6. Learn something new
If you have a thirst for knowledge, then spending your free time learning is perhaps the best way to avoid boredom. There are so many things that we can learn about, from money to history and art. All you need to do is choose the area you’d like to learn about. You can find endless amounts of resources on the internet, or maybe even by talking to people you know about the subject. So whether you pick up a book you’ve been meaning to start or take an online course, you can develop a new skill or area of interest with ease.
7. Tick some things off your to-do list
We’ve all got those obscure things on our to-do list that we never get around to doing. Whether it’s opening a savings account or ordering that thing your mom wanted you to find for her. When you’re bored, it means you have time on your hands, so you have an opportunity to get stuff done too. You’ll thank yourself in the future for getting on with it now.
If you’re feeling active…
If you want to turn your boredom into kinetic energy then you should get active!
8. Go for a walk
Walking is a great way to not only exercise and get your steps in, but to clear your mind and reflect on your day, emotions and even life! Taking in the scenes of nature and fresh air do wonders for your physical and mental health, and is an awesome way to spend your time. It sure beats staying inside staring at the walls.
9. Do a workout
Whether you’re a seasoned fitness enthusiast or more of a novice, if you find yourself with nothing to do, try getting active. We all know how important it is to exercise, but finding the time to do so amidst busy schedules is sometimes a chore. But doing a workout gets your blood pumping and builds strength and stamina in the body, and is a wonderful way to shake off that feeling of boredom and a lack of energy.
If you’re feeling social…
If you’re alone and bored, it might just be that you’re fed up with your own company. So if you’re craving some social interaction, reach out to a friend.
10. FaceTime a friend
With the coronavirus pandemic very much a fixture in all of our lives now, seeing a friend isn’t so easy. So pick up the phone and get on a video call with a loved one for some much needed human connection. It could be that you phone a friend that you’ve been too busy to talk to recently, or someone who always makes you feel better. Sometimes we all need a little pick me up from someone we love.
11. Go for a socially distanced walk
If you’re able to, you could even organize a socially distanced walk or picnic with a friend so you can see them in person, safely.
We’ve just skimmed the surface of the things you can do to combat boredom, but there really are so many possibilities. If you find yourself with nothing to do, the bottom line is to do something that makes you feel good – because who doesn’t want to be happy?