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Entertaining Boredom

It seems I’ve seen more Facebook status updates and Tweets about the start of October this year than any year before–no doubt due to the abbreviated winter and extended summer experienced around the nation this year. I too found myself falling for the glee of fall’s arrival, and with that came warm pumpkin-inspired drinks, hearty soups and yummy cinnamon spiced sweets. If you’re like me, one of the highlights of fall’s arrival is seasonal treats. But beware, shortened days often lead to boredem and when I’m bored I start looking for something to occupy both my tummy and my mind.

So why exactly do we tend to pack on the pounds during the cooler months? Well, here’s one theory. We’re bored. Now, why are we bored? You may think it has something to do with your environment but a recent study conducted by a team of Canadian researchers found that being bored has to do more with ourselves.

Acording to the study, “boredom occurs when we have trouble paying attention to internal and external stimuli needed to enjoy an activity, we realize we struggle to pay attention, and we blame the environment for our lack of enjoyment.”

John Eastwood, one of the researchers on the team, said, “I think that you can think about it in two ways … boredom is related to addiction, gambling, eating problems … or you can think of chronic, protracted boredom as a problem in its own right.”

So what’s the solution? Find more ways to entertain yourself other than food. The researchers believe advances in technology had lead us to feel, what I would sum up as ‘a need for speed.’ Go back to some of the games and hobbies you enjoyed as a child. Join a book club, local gym; learn a new language or try picking up a new instrument. I enjoy attending plays in the winter to keep myself entertained.

October is the perfect time to explore local attractions and activities. Don’t think you’re too old to walk through a haunted house, corn maze or carve a pumpkin. Have fun entertaining your bored side!

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