The Psychology of Boredom
LEARN ABOUT THE PSYCHOLOGY OF BOREDOM
Boredom is one of those things we all think we understand… until we try to define it. Is it laziness? Is it apathy? Neither is true. Boredom is perhaps best captured in a quote from Leo Tolstoy, who describes it as “a desire for desires.” When we’re bored, we are disengaged from the world around us–a state that feels deeply uncomfortable. In a sense, boredom’s goal is to eliminate itself and as such it plays a vital role in our lives.
Understanding the Psychology of Boredom
Boredom works to regulate our pursuit of goals–to explore the world for new opportunities to deploy our skills and talents. But for the so-called “boredom prone,” higher rates of depression and anxiety are common. In this class, Professor Danckert will explore this interplay between the functional role of boredom in our lives and the failure for some to heed the signal in adaptive ways, touching on findings from surveys, behavior, and brain imaging.
Discussion Questions About the Psychology of Boredom:
1. Is boredom a problem only of the affluent?
2. Have smartphones effectively eliminated boredom?
3. Are there any good reasons to cultivate boredom?
Professor Danckert’s Recommended Reading:
Out of My Skull: The Psychology of Boredom, by James Danckert and John Eastwood
Propelled: How Boredom, Frustration, and Anticipation Lead to the Good Life, by Andreas Elpidorou
Learn More About the Psychology of Boredom
Learn more about the psychology of boredom by checking out our latest psychology lectures in our online video lectures library. Below are some recent additions as well as some student favorites, including 8 Books That Changed The World, Managing Stress: The Power Of Mindset, Reduce Stress At Home & Work. Access to all recorded psychology lectures comes standard with our membership, click here to learn more.