It’s your day off. You get up, go to the bathroom, and then you find yourself in the kitchen. As you prepare your breakfast, still in your jammies, you think about the day ahead. Should you go out or stay inside? What movies should you watch? What books to read? Or maybe sit at the computer or on your phone all day? So many options.
Breakfast is done. You eat it and then think about that chocolate sitting in one of the cupboards. Slowly opening the door, you say to yourself ‘It’s morning. I deserve to have something sweet. After all, it’s my day off.’ So, you do.
Your day feels a bit blurry. And so you sink into more food, a treat here and there, a bag of chips or popcorn as you watch your favorite movies.
Boredom. What do most of us feel like doing when we are bored? That’s right. We eat.
But why do we do that? Most importantly, how to avoid getting bored when we are not eating?
I will share a 4-part strategy with you that will help tremendously. You’ll be able to let go of eating and embrace boredom in its fullness. And know what to do so that you don’t get bored easily.
Part 1 – Identify reasons.
Even before you consider a solution, it’s helpful to understand the problem. You do that by uncovering the hidden reasons behind your actions. Ask yourself:
- Why do I get bored?
- Why do I eat when bored?
Write 9 reasons for each. This exercise will not only uncover the reasons behind your actions, but they will make you stretch your imagination. They will fuel your potential.
Then, once you have the reasons, move on to part 2.
Part 2 – Accept boredom.
When did you decide that boredom is a bad thing? I know. It feels like you enter a void. And you simply can’t stand being there doing nothing. We are used to always be in motion. When days off come, we don’t know what to do with them. And you know what? That’s normal. Most of us do it the exact same way. That doesn’t mean you can’t choose to do something else when you enter that void.
One thing that is helpful is to acknowledge the void. As you enter it and you experience boredom, be aware of what that feels like. Is it uncomfortable? Is it safe and liberating? Is it keeping you stuck?
Then, answer these 3 questions on paper:
- What does boredom feel like? (physically, emotionally)
- Why do I think boredom is a bad thing?
- Why is boredom such a nice thing to experience?
Know that you can never be truly bored. There are so many things out there to do. It would be selfish of you not to try them out. I know this may be perceived as harsh. But deep down you know there are so many more things to do than just eat when bored. This leads to part 3.
Part 3 – Understand eating.
Boredom and eating are 2 separate actions, feelings, states and choices. You connect them first and then you disconnect them. The link between boredom and eating is that you feel like you’re doing nothing, simply wasting time. So you choose to eat. But what happens underneath? Follow this set of questions to uncover what eating is like for you.
- What do I get out of eating while bored?
- What do I not get?
Journal on these 2 questions. They will help you decide what weighs more, you eating or not eating when bored. And now, let’s bring it all together to how you can get rid of boredom and eating while bored once and for all.
Part 4 – Spark passion and potential.
When you don’t know what to do or you feel you have unlimited time to do whatever you want, you choose activities that don’t take up much of your time and energy. Eating happens to be one of them. Because it’s also supposed to give you energy in the process. So, ponder on what it is that sparks your joy.
- What do I enjoy doing?
- What are my hobbies?
- What’s my passion?
- How can I do more of these even on my days off?
- Is eating part of my passion? Does it help me experience my full potential?
- If I was unable to eat when bored, what would I do instead?
Once you answer all these questions, you’ll have a clear image in mind of all those options you’ve been ignoring. And you’ll bring them to the forefront of your life.
Sometimes we feel like we should not work during our days off. Or that we shouldn’t work on our passions because it would rob us of precious free time. Or that it would make us fall in love with that one thing we are passionate about.
These fears are normal. Welcome them because they help you grow. But let them be. Work on what makes you feel alive.
On that note, I invite you to send me a message and have a conversation that will instill some well-earned clarity into your life. It’s all about raising your energy so that you stay healthy and inspired.