One emotion that we experience from time to time is boredom. You aren’t interested in doing something, or you don’t have anything to do. It happens from time to time. For some, boredom can be the worst sensation ever. For others, it’s a gift and a part of life.
However, when is it boredom and when is it a sign of something worse, such as depression? In this post, we will try to find the answer to that.
But First, What Exactly is Boredom?
Boredom seems like a concept that is easy to define. We know when something is boring. For example, being stuck in a lecture by a speaker who has no personality. Having to do a monotonous task for money. When you watch a movie that isn’t catching your interest. We all know what boredom is, but it’s a little deeper than that.
Boredom can be pleasant. For example, you may be in a state of relaxed boredom where nothing is interesting you and you just want to rest. You may let your thoughts wander on this lazy day.
Other times, boredom can be a little anxiety-inducing. You want to find something to relieve the boredom you’re feeling, and when you’re stuck in an area where you can’t find anything interesting, or you’re in a mood where it’s hard to be satisfied, it can cause some problems.
Finally, there is the type of boredom that we’ll discuss later, where you may feel helpless and have unpleasant emotions.
Sometimes, it can be more than boredom. You may be showing signs of chronic depression. Certain emotions you feel with boredom can apply to symptoms of depression, including:
- Not being interested in what you used to love. Sometimes, tastes change, or we’re not in the mood to do something we usually love to do. However, if you find yourself disliking everything you used to love, it could be a sign of depression.
- Feeling apathetic over everything. Being bored can give you this emotion, but so can
- Saying to yourself, “I don’t want to do anything.” Some days, we just feel lazy, but if you find yourself unable to get out of bed in the morning, it could be a sign that you’re depressed.
- Having constant negative thoughts. Some of us wake up on the wrong side of the bed, and that is completely normal, but if you find yourself always being negative and you don’t know why, it could be due to depression.
Can Boredom Become Depression?
We mentioned that the feelings of boredom could be similar to depression, but can boredom lead to depression? Obviously, the occasional boredom isn’t anything to worry about, but what if you’re feeling bored all the time?
In that case, it may lead to depression. If you’re stuck in a place where there isn’t anything fun to do, your mood may worsen as a result. In some cases, you may end up having destructive behaviors. For example, you could end up trying illegal drugs, drinking more, or taking riskier behaviors to relieve your boredom.
It depends on the level of boredom as well. Some people experience apathetic boredom, where they believe that nothing in life matters, and there isn’t anything they find entertaining. This is something that may have to be treated via therapy.
Symptoms of Boredom Shared With Depression
Depression has various symptoms that overlap with boredom. Here are some examples of them.
- With depression, you may have mood swings or feel low. The same can apply with some cases of extreme boredom.
- Depression and boredom can involve losing interest in activities you once enjoyed.
- Feeling depressed can make you tired and make it difficult for you to concentrate. The same can apply to boredom. For instance, it may be hard for you to focus on something if you have no interest in it.
So How Do You Know if It’s More Than Boredom?
With everything said, how can you tell if you’re experiencing a slow day where you don’t want to do anything, and depression? Here are some signs.
- First, think about how long you have felt this way. If it’s been a day or a couple of days, it may just be a passing feeling. If you’ve felt this way for weeks, it could be a sign of something serious.
- You feel unfulfilled with life, or nothing you enjoy is no longer fun.
- There’s a big difference between feeling relaxed and being unable to move around.
- There’s been a big change in your life that could be causing your depression, such as a death in the family or a recent move.
Try Treating Your Boredom Organically
If you think it’s boredom, you should first try treating it any way you can. Try finding a new hobby, or find something you usually enjoy and add a twist to it. Don’t be afraid to spend time on a site designed to treat boredom. Go outside and run around.
If that doesn’t work, and you still feel bored, apathetic, and as if nothing matters, it may help to talk to a therapist.
A therapist may help you to find the cause of your apathy and help you to treat it. Treating it may require a life change or a combination of medication and therapy. For example, cognitive behavioral therapy or mindfulness could be just what the doctor ordered.
A therapist usually finds ways to keep you invested during the process, whether it’s asking you questions you have to think about, or helping you to question how you live your life. When you’re treating your mental health, there never is a dull moment.
In conclusion, boredom and depression are closely related, and you should seek help if you feel like it’s more of the latter than the former. It may be more than just a dull day.
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