Boredom & Creativity

This is what I’ve been sailing in lately – Boredom. Of course, boredom is not something new to me, to anyone for that matter. But since I was experiencing it a lot lately, I thought of making it the topic of this week’s blog. So here I am, writing about boredom and its significance and relationship with creativity.

Boredom is a state in which you’re completely disinterested in an activity you’re doing which in turn may make you be not interested in any other activities as well.

Boredom can cause a lot of trouble to you if you don’t realize what it is. If you’re not conscious of your boredom, you might feel very low. It can mess up your mental health, just because you didn’t realize you’re simply bored.

Boredom can hurt you, believe me, I’ve been there. If you don’t realize the simple fact that you’re just bored, you’ll hurt yourself badly. The mind starts wandering around in all places you don’t want it to as you know that’ll hurt yourself. And once you’ve hurt, then you’ve created a problem trying to solve a problem that didn’t exist.

Boredom is a very necessary state, it’s very essential. Boredom, though it might seem so, is not the opposite of Creativity. Instead, it’s a tool, if recognized and used properly can make you more creative!

By the way, my boredom levels reach the high when I’m in college listening to subjects and topics completely irrelevant to the real world, completely irrelevant to what you can do right now to apply that knowledge. But that’s not the boredom I’m talking about, that’ll remain the same for me forever till those classes remain irrelevant to the real world. I’m talking about the phase of boredom in the cycle of creativity.

Like many aspects of life, Creativity also moves in a sinusoidal signal, in crests and troughs, or, in other words, there’s ups and downs, there’ll be peaks of high-level creativity and there’ll be peaks of despair due to boredom.

I was a victim of great levels of despair and low feelings. I used to hit this low point very often until I realized it was part of the creative cycle. In other words, I was in a loop, I used to get low just a few days after I had finished a new creative project that I was working on. It’s because I didn’t realize it was just boredom. And soon after I realized that it was somewhere in January this year, the way I saw these cycles changed.

Once you recognize the cycle of creativity you’re in, you’re liberated. You’ll start to enjoy and embrace boredom! You might have heard that ‘ Creativity is like a muscle and it needs to be relaxed for it to grow and build stronger. If you hit the gym regularly or you do yoga you may know this already, relaxing your muscles is as important as much as working out! Similarly, boredom is important as much as the times you create amazing things out of your creativity.

But of course, it’s the balance that’s important, make sure you don’t mistake procrastination for boredom, it’s a very important distinction.

That being said, I’ll give you a few tips for transitioning from the phase of boredom that may help you transition to the creative phase quicker and better.

  1. Acknowledge your boredom. As already said, the first key step towards squeezing out of boredom is to recognize it for what it is.
  2. Let yourself do every random thing that your mind wants to do at this phase, of course, it should not be something harmful to your mental or physical health either in the short or long term. Just relax, let go of any anxiety, stress, frustration, or anything that’s bothering you at all.
  3. Have an Artist’s Date. This is like the continuation of the second point. Want to walk miles without a destination in mind all by yourself, order a little treat from your favorite restaurant, want to build a sand castle-like when you were a kid without bothering who’ll think or tell what, do it, doodle those silly lines, and faces you would draw when you were a kid. Simply said, Do anything that the artist in you, the child in you wants to do. And that’s the source of your creativity!
  4. Find inspiration. This should be after you’ve left your child self play enough. Sometimes, inspiration comes naturally after you’ve played enough, but if it didn’t, you can deliberately seek inspiration. Go to art galleries, museums, parks, forests, a village house, whatever it is that lets you observe what other creators have created, and nature is the greatest of all creators. 
  5. CREATE! After you’re through these points mentioned above, acknowledging boredom, doing random things, having an artist’s date, and after you’ve taken inspiration, you’d be glad you had a great time, it was very fun, this boredom phase, it’s time to get back into the cycle you love even more! Get back to creating!

Thank You,

Yours Loving,
Sanath Kumar Nabhi

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