In the beginning of June, I read a book called Bored and Brilliant: How Spacing Out can Unlock Your Most Productive and Creative Self by Manoush Zomorodi. I wanted a book to read to get my creative juices flowing because I didn’t create anything in a while. This book seemed useful based on the description and recommendation I received. It talked about how being bored and letting your mind wander is exactly what your brain needs in order to problem solve, create, etc. Recently with the increase in social media use and technology it is kind of difficult to truly allow your brain to be bored and not engaging in some type of stimulation such as games, music, social media sites, etc. The idea for the book was originally based on a 7-day challenge that the author and other participants did. The author incorporates the challenge, research, and insight from experts and participants into the book.
Sidenote: this book is not antisocial media and neither I am. This book talked a lot about how social media is not completely evil but the type of usage can be harmful for some people. It also acknowledged many of the benefits of social media and technology. The book reminded me a lot about some of points I made in this blog post, Another Blog Post about Social Media
While reading this book, I realized how much stimulation I am constantly tuning in to such as listening to music or podcasts while I am doing tedious work/commuting, watching youtube videos while I eat, and mindlessly scrolling. Sometimes always tuning into my phone causes me to forget to take in my surroundings and its unique features. The minute I feel bored I make myself do something instead of being bored because I feel like I am wasting time. After reading the book, I decided to do the 7-day challenge which included different ways to cut down on phone usage each day. Some days were easier than others but for the most part, the challenge helped me to become aware of much I’m in my phone to avoid being bored. While doing the challenge, I allowed myself to be bored and let my mind wander. At first, it felt very weird because I felt like I should have been doing something productive. After a while of being bored, completely new ideas just started entering my mind (some of which became blog posts). I started feeling creative and excited. I never thought that being bored would be helpful for productivity, but it was.
The book helped me with my creativity and decreasing my phone/social media use. It was also very enlightening because the author interviewed many experts from different fields that was related to the book, so it was great to read about different perspectives and evolution of social media, technology, and society. The book gave a full context and did not take sides or tell people that they are wrong for using social media. It offered a lot of things to consider and small practical changes that could be beneficial.
Time to Focus on You:
Read Bored and Brilliant. Then go be bored for a while and/or try out the 7-day challenge and see what happens.