April 13, 2020

Managing Boredom

Anxiety & Depression

Anybody struggling with restlessness? As the shelter at home remains in place, my family and I have noticed that we are ordering way more take out food than usual. What is your restlessness vice? Snacking? Binge eating? Reaching out to an ex? Vegging on TV? Biting your nails? Drinking? Blazing? Online shopping? Engaging in Porn? The list could go on and on right? And some of these habits may be more harmful than others. My hope in this blog is to give you some quick tips on how to manage boredom.

Exploring your habit

  • It’s important to notice what your restlessness-producing habit is.
  • Acknowledge how this habit is helping you. It’s possible that the activity you’re engaging in is not only helping you with feeling restless, but may be meeting another need. For instance, we are ordering more take out food, because it gives us something to look forward to. I’ll bet that many of our current habits are also because we are tired, anxious, sad, or feeling lonely.
  • Decide if this is a habit that you’d like to continue with. Your decision to change this habit will depend in large part on your motivation, willingness to change, how important it is to change it, and if you feel that you have the capacity to change this behavior.
  • Once you’ve made a decision, let someone else know what your goal is. Accountability and encouragement from others matters. Furthermore, you are not alone. One thing that has been abundantly clear is that we are all in this together, and that the struggle is real.
  • Lastly, what do you plan to do to replace that habit? The habit is there because it’s meeting a need. If you don’t identify or practice another way to cope and care for that need you will go back to that habit.

Self-Compassion & Hope

  • Offer compassion to yourself. I’ve seen many posts on IG that offer encouragement and compassion that our productivity and our days will look different than normal, and that my friends are okay.
  • Make a list of things that you can look forward to in the coming days. What plant have you been watching grow that you are looking forward to the flowers blooming? Is there a TV show that’s coming back on TV that you’re looking forward to watching? Is there a house project that you plan to tackle? What we are looking forward to today, will look differently than it may have been since this all began!

If you’re concerned that your habits are becoming greater than you can handle on your own, know that our therapists at Optimum Joy are here for you and able to provide telehealth services. Don’t maneuver through this time alone. Call today!

Written by therapist Pamela Larkin

We can help you get started

Ready to set up your first appointment?

If you haven’t been in touch with us yet, you can get started by filling out our intake form.