Boredom – An Essential Ingredient for Creativity | Atomic Tae Kwon Do
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I’ve been taking my boys to Atomic for about 3 years now and love it there. Master Bart and Dr. Luiza are two amazing instructors who have a staff of instructors that are just as warm, friendly, and knowledgeable as they are. Master Bart and Dr. Luiza have gotten to know my boys so well, I trust them inherently with the boys and have even consulted with them for advice about my boys whenever I need some feedback or input. I love watching my boys progress and seeing how happy and proud they are to accomplish goals and move forward with each belt they earn is what it’s all about. I highly recommend Atomic Tae Kwon Do!!

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Boredom – An Essential Ingredient for Creativity

 

Remember when you wished the weekend would last forever? As weeks of the “shelter in place” order have passed, the eagerness for some “time off” has lost its spark. Children’s boredom is growing day by day and will continue, especially at this time with social isolation. The rising monotony of each day brings about an increase in technology use to keep children occupied. What they should be doing, however, is embracing the boredom and allowing their creative juices to flow.

When we are bored, we are more likely to engage in “sensation seeking.” A study in the Journal of Experimental Social Psychology states that boredom causes us to look for activities to stimulate the reward centers of the brain. Since using devices increases dopamine, the neural connections for this increase, and our brains crave it more and more. The ability to let our minds wander is diminished and any moment that lacks stimulation makes us uncomfortable. And, unfortunately, our children are learning to satisfy these unpleasant feelings with technology.

As Bertrand Russell, a British philosopher, said “We are less bored than our ancestors were, but we are more afraid of boredom.” However, when we try to rid ourselves of every moment of boredom, we close off our ability to think on a deeper level. Boredom breeds creativity and when children can fulfill the stimulation they are seeking by allowing themselves to “space out,” associative thinking is engaged. Sooner or later, they will create a new game, find different uses for items, or be inspired to find a new skill.

By enforcing an amount of boredom daily, children not only tap into creativity, but they also give their brains an opportunity to rest and reset. When the brain is relaxed, mental clutter diminishes, and new possibilities are abounding. A sense of curiosity presents itself and children learn problem solving skills by a need to fulfill idle time. Their confidence is then built because they are taking chances with new experiences and goals. By allowing children the time to explore new things, parents help them learn life skills that will stick with them when things go back to normal.

To support children even more, parents can be role models by resisting the urge to pick up a device during every moment of down time. Parents can also take the opportunity to implement Parent SKILLZ techniques and information. By putting down devices, parents can be more attuned to their child’s curiosities and prompt them to try new things. Doing so in a way that is fun and fosters new interests can also enhance the parent and child connection.

 With our current situation, the Covid slump and ensuing boredom will surely hit harder this year. Creating a plan for children that allows space in their routine for “boredom” will promote curiosity. Remember, as Robert M. Pirsig said, “Boredom always proceeds a period of great creativity.” Learning to “space out” again and avoiding the constant use of technology will create a more relaxed mind and cultivate a more inquisitive approach to life.