quarantine boredom creativity

Dr Sandi Mann, from Salford. Image Credit: Menachem Abrams

With the country in lockdown due to the Coronavirus, Salford residents, like the rest of the country, have been self-isolating with life a complete contrast to what it was before.

However, for some people, the boredom that comes as a result of the quarantine is not necessarily a bad thing.

Dr Sandi Mann, from Salford, is a Psychologist and lecturer at the University of Central Lancashire and has done extensive research on boredom and how it affects people’s creativity.

She has quite literally written the book on the subject titled The Upside of Downtime: Why Boredom is Good.

Mann states: “I’ve shown in my research when we get a chance to be bored we can be more creative. This is because if we’re bored our brains will tend to find its own entertainment.”

However, not everyone deals with the boredom well.

Mann says: “If you are struggling with too much boredom, a good thing to do is to let your mind wander and daydream because your mind will come up with its own solutions.”

Dr Mann however has not really had the time to be bored herself, stating: “I think it’s really important to be bored.

“I’m really really busy but I’m trying to spend an hour a day walking especially when we’ve had nice weather because walking is a really good activity where you can just let your mind wander.”

In fact, Government guidelines during the lockdown advise: “One form of exercise a day, for example, a run, walk, or cycle – alone or with members of your household” is allowed.

If you want more advice on following government guidelines you can visit the website here.

Another aspect of boredom which must not be overlooked is the impact it can have on mental health.

Dr Mann says: “Yes we’re seeing an increase in mental health worries but interestingly we’re starting to see a decrease as well with some people who are able to get out in the world and stop and want to get off kind of thing, so it’s an interesting conundrum.

“Some people’s anxiety is going up and in others, it’s going down.”

Many places have advice on different activities to help people deal with quarantine life with Mind in Salford being one of them.

For some people, the answer to the boredom of quarantine restrictions is to develop new hobbies or learn a new skill.

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