What Can I Do If I’m Feeling Bored With Life? Strategies To Add Excitement

Medically reviewed by Lauren Fawley
Updated March 1, 2024by BetterHelp Editorial Team

Whether you work a repetitive job, have children, or follow various career paths, a routine might make daily life feel unexciting and lead to chronic boredom. However, a routine doesn't necessarily have to make life dull. By embracing creativity and finding new ways to enjoy your free time, there's a clear path to make your day-to-day life more exciting. Not everyone will experience boredom the same way, but we'll walk you through how to overcome boredom using these unique approaches, making every moment a fun one.

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You may break your daily activities down into primary and secondary routines. Primary routines are those that are biologically necessary, including:

  • Sleep

  • Eating

  • Personal hygiene

Secondary routines may encompass career paths, social activities, exercise, and hobbies. By varying your secondary routines, you may effectively make your life feel more exciting and, therefore, less prone to a persistent feeling of boredom.

Though it might sound easy in theory, it can be more challenging to achieve in practice. Many people find themselves tired after a day of work and unenthusiastic about altering routines. Instant gratification may be tempting, but there are proven benefits of stepping outside of your comfort zone. Trying new things, like joining a new group or making new friends, may bring a sense of uncertainty, vulnerability, and self-consciousness, but they can also enrich your personal life.

Benefits of changing your routine

The following studies show the potential benefits of changing up your routine for young people and adults alike.

  • Taking breaks while you work or sitting for endless hours has been shown to improve mental stamina and reduce fatigue, giving you more energy to pursue fun activities you are interested in.
  • Listening to a new song or exploring a new idea is enough to improve your focus, concentration, and memory. Trying new things has the potential to broaden your horizons and help you learn something new.
  • Embracing new experiences can release dopamine, helping you feel happier and more energized in your own life.
  • Leaving your comfort zone may help you learn new skills, develop self-confidence, and realize the world of possibilities that await you.

12 ways to reduce boredom in your daily life

If you consistently find that you’re bored with your life, there are several ways you can try to break the cycle:

1. Set aside time and money

Changing up your routine may take conscious effort and possibly some money. You might decide to forego one (or a few) of your usual activities to try something new instead. For example, if you typically jog every day, you could consider alternating a jogging session for a meditation class or a music lesson. Consider setting aside an hour each week to engage in a new experience or a romantic relationship.

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2. Find humor in daily life

Laughter therapy can reduce stress and anxiety and promote a higher quality of life. You might want to try going to a comedy club, listening to a funny podcast while commuting to work, or reading comic strips to find more humor in your daily life. Embrace the present moment and let yourself wonder at the little joys around you.

3. Discover what eats up your time

Some tasks, like washing dishes or going to work, may be essential. However, others, like checking your email and social media accounts multiple times daily, may not be essential. Many organizations and individuals realize that they can manage their time more effectively. By tracking what you spend time on each day, you may understand where time is lost. For example, reducing unproductive time before and after work may free up your time to engage in more activities you enjoy.

4. Find a new style

Making small changes, like dying your hair a different shade or wearing an outfit you do not typically wear, may be enough to mix up your routine. Wearing outfits that you like may contribute to higher self-confidence and positively impact your future.

5. Be a host

Challenging yourself to host a dinner party at your house may help you get outside your comfort zone. You could invite friends or family and confide in a friend you've invited about why you've stepped out of your comfort zone. They may be able to provide moral support for you throughout the evening.

6. Redecorate your space

Marie Kondo, the organizing consultant, often says, "Discard everything that does not spark joy." The things that occupy space in your home may require your time and attention to dust, clean, and maintain. Attaching emotional meaning to objects is common, but decluttering can free up your time and help you break out of your routines.

7. Reconnect with friends

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Looking for healthy new ways to spice up your life?

Reconnecting with a childhood friend or a friend you haven't spoken to in a few months may help build stronger relationships. If you feel nervous about taking an art class on your own, asking a friend if they would like to try it with you may help you build confidence. Additionally, reaching out to friends can provide support for those dealing with mental illness and may alleviate feelings of isolation.

8. Start journaling

Routinely writing or drawing may help you reflect on your feelings and experiences. You could try writing about your experience with boredom. For example, you could reflect on how long you have been feeling bored or feel more excited about life after trying a new activity. A few minutes of journaling after work can help you decompress. Studies show that expressive writing, like journaling, benefits your mental health.

9. Take night classes

When you feel bored, you may want to learn something new. Night or online classes may allow you to meet new people and acquire new knowledge in topics that interest you. If you'd like a valuable skill to use at home, you might take a sewing, cooking, or cleaning class.

10. mix up your exercise routine

If you typically walk on a treadmill for exercise, you could consider walking outside or trying an at-home high-intensity interval training (HIIT) workout. Changing your exercise routine may make your workout more exciting and improve your physical health. If you join a group exercise class, you may also benefit from increased social interactions and the formation of new friendships.

11. Start your day differently

If you feel hesitant about making many changes at once, you might try making one or two minor modifications at a time. For example, instead of waking up at 7 am, you may try waking up at 6 am and going for a morning walk. Minor changes may be easier to commit to and follow through with over time.

12. Create a to-do list

If you take time to think about ways you would like to try changing your routine, you can write them down as short-term and long-term goals. Making lists may give you the added satisfaction of being able to tick off your accomplishments as you try new things.

Seeking professional help for boredom

Many people experience boredom at some point in their lives, and it may not be intrinsically a bad thing. Boredom can improve creativity, and daydreaming can be a good outlet for escaping stress. However, finding that you’re bored with life persistently may put you into a rut that’s difficult to emerge from. In such a case, boredom may actually be related to anxiety or depression, and you may find yourself turning to unhealthy coping mechanisms like alcohol misuse or social isolation.

You may wish to seek out the guidance of a professional therapist if you have symptoms of anxiety or depression, or want to talk with someone about strategies to reduce boredom and wait for positive changes to happen.

Online therapy might be a good fit for you if you are having difficulty finding the time to travel to a therapist's office or prefer to attend therapy sessions from the comfort of your home. Online therapy has been shown to be effective in treating depression. A literature review of 14 peer-reviewed articles found that people who have depression and sought treatment with online therapy saw a reduction in their depression symptoms, similar to those treated with traditional therapy.

Takeaway

Stepping away from your routine can be an effective way to challenge your feelings of boredom and change your life for the better.

If you are having trouble trying new activities or have attempted new activities but still feel bored, you might want to seek the guidance of an in-person therapist or an online therapist from a platform like BetterHelp.

A mental health professional may help you develop strategies to move outside your comfort zone and address boredom.

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