Embrace Boredom: A Strategy to Combat Procrastination

In the fast-paced digital world, we often find ourselves trapped in the endless cycle of scrolling through our phones, procrastinating on tasks that need to be done. However, there’s a simple, yet effective strategy to combat this – embracing boredom.

A Socially Accepted Addiction

Scrolling through social media has become a socially accepted addiction due to its widespread use and the immediate rewards it provides in the form of attention from others. However, this addiction can be harmful.

It’s characterized by an uncontrollable urge to use social media, leading to excessive time spent on these platforms, often at the expense of other important life areas.

The constant stream of likes, shares, and comments can trigger a dopamine release in the brain, similar to the effect of addictive substances. This can lead to a cycle of dependency, where individuals use social media to relieve stress, loneliness, or depression, which can exacerbate these feelings over time.

It’s a habit that’s hard to break, but acknowledging it is the first step towards overcoming it.

The Comfort of Scrolling

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Photo Credit: Deposit Photos.

After a long day of work, it’s incredibly tempting to sink into a comfortable chair and lose ourselves in the endless scroll of our phones. This activity, while seemingly harmless, can lead to a state of mental fatigue, despite not requiring much cognitive effort.

The ease of scrolling can often deter us from accomplishing tasks that don’t necessarily require our brainpower, such as chores or exercise.

People tend to scroll endlessly on social media due to the dopamine hits our brains receive each time we switch between posts, creating a neurological ‘high’. Endless scrolling on social media is influenced by three key factors: the amount of media already viewed, the similarity of the media viewed, and the manner in which it was viewed.

These factors enhance the appeal of related content, leading to a cycle of continuous consumption. This behavior is so prevalent that studies show 77% of employees use social media during work.

The similarity, repetitiveness, and relatedness of the content consumed can lead to what is often referred to as a ‘media consumption rabbit hole’.

The Power of Boredom

The solution to this problem might be simpler than you think – get bored. Remember those times when you visited your parents and found yourself helping out with chores or housework out of sheer boredom? This is because the lack of stimulating activities, like fast internet or video games, pushes us to engage in tasks that we would otherwise put off.

Getting bored can help combat procrastination by lowering our standard levels of stimulation. In our digital world, we’re accustomed to high levels of stimulation, which can make tasks that require focus seem less appealing.

By purposefully allowing ourselves to get bored, we can reset our stimulation levels, making tasks that were once seen as boring or daunting more engaging. This can be achieved by reducing distractions and focusing on the task at hand.

Over time, this practice can lead to increased productivity and a greater ability to focus on long-term rewards.

The Existential Dread

One might wonder, how do we deal with the existential dread and self-doubt that can creep in when we’re not constantly stimulated? The key is to observe these thoughts without judgment or feeding into them. This practice is the foundation of meditation and can help us manage our anxieties about the future or regrets about the past.

Dealing with existential dread and self-doubt involves acknowledging these feelings as a normal part of the human experience. It’s crucial to accept the uncertainty and the lack of immediate answers to life’s biggest questions.

Techniques such as meditation can help manage these feelings by promoting mindfulness and presence at the moment.

Additionally, sharing these feelings with trusted individuals can provide perspective and a sense of connection. Lastly, engaging in activities that bring joy and laughter can help distract from distress and make existential worries more manageable.

The “I Might As Well” Mindset

Another strategy to combat procrastination is adopting the “I might as well” mindset. This involves seizing opportunities to complete small tasks when they present themselves.

For instance, if you’re heading to the kitchen, you might as well bring in the dirty coffee mug. These small tasks can add up quickly, reducing the overall cleaning time.

It can be positive when it’s applied to personal growth and development. It allows for the cultivation of grit, the passion for pushing oneself through challenging times, and the ability to embrace possible failures as part of the learning process.

An example, when faced with a challenging task, instead of giving up, you might think, “I might as well try and see how far I can go.” It encourages persistence, ambition, and self-discipline, which are key to achieving long-term goals.

Final Thoughts

The digital world, while offering numerous benefits, can also lead to challenges such as procrastination and social media addiction.

Embracing boredom, practicing mindfulness, and adopting the “I might as well” mindset can help combat these issues. However, it’s crucial to recognize the potential harm of excessive scrolling and the importance of maintaining a balanced relationship with our digital devices. It’s okay to disconnect and engage in real-world interactions.

By understanding these concepts and implementing the strategies discussed, we can navigate the digital world more effectively, enhancing our productivity and overall well-being.

Sources:

1: addictioncenter.com/drugs/social-media-addiction/

2: hbr.org/2022/01/the-psychology-of-your-scrolling-addiction

Original Article Source: Reddit

Martha A. Lavallie
Martha A. Lavallie
Author & Editor | + posts

Martha is a journalist with close to a decade of experience in uncovering and reporting on the most compelling stories of our time. Passionate about staying ahead of the curve, she specializes in shedding light on trending topics and captivating global narratives. Her insightful articles have garnered acclaim, making her a trusted voice in today's dynamic media landscape.