How to overcome boredom on the job

Boredom is most frequently linked to a wide variety of feelings associated with monotony, repetition, even insecurity and stress. Some people say they are bored at their jobs; others are bored in their leisure time. For some, immersing themselves in a task can be boring; for others, completing a task can be the most boring part of a job. Still others find meetings dull, ‘ho-hum’, ‘a big yawn’, boring. Although there can be no one prescription for overcoming boredom, some considerations will help you to deal with this modern-day ailment...

1. Do things differently.

Start by identifying possible contributors to your feeling of boredom - and change them. Doing the same thing is often identified as a contributor. If so, change the task. A solution may be as simple as having a sleep-in on weekends to break out of the rut of rushing to arrive at work on time. If you’re bored replying to e-mails, you might write letters instead.

2. Do the same things in a different way.

If you cannot postpone a task, you can vary the way you do things. Just as you can telephone someone instead of sending an e-mail, you can devise different ways of doing the same thing. A change of scenery can also help. Dan Sullivan, strategic coach to successful entrepreneurs, found the environment in coffee shops such an inspiration for his creative thought that he established his own close to his training rooms. If you’re feeling bored doing things in a particular way; do anything but continue that way of doing things.

3. Change the order of tasks.

Accomplishing your goals need not limit involvement in other pursuits. You might find that going for a brisk walk or jog can actually help you to complete a task without any associated feelings of boredom. This approach may also indicate that you could be taking on too many tasks that provide little opportunity for savouring your successes.

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