What is a bore-out?

We all know the term ´burnout´ and a lot of people are trying to find balance in life so that they don´t burn out eventually. It is almost hard to believe but there are also people who are bored out. Bore-out is a relatively new term that describes a condition that occurs when employees are underutilized and have little or no stimulation or challenge in their work. It is the opposite of burnout and is a significant problem that is often overlooked. In this blog post, we will discuss bore out, its symptoms, and what you can do to avoid it.

What is a bore-out?

A burnout is a pretty familiar term these days and it means that you are basically doing too many things at the same time. And you are overstimulated. With social media/internet, we are being stimulated most of our days. That is okay for a while but if you keep doing the same amount of things for a long time, you can get a burnout. Bore-out is the opposite. It means you need more stimulation and you are not being challenged at school or at work. Maybe your (school)work is just too easy for you. But sometimes you experience bore-out symptoms when you are not interested in doing the work. You don’t fulfilled when you do your work. 

Symptoms of Bore Out

The symptoms of a bore-out are pretty similar to burnout symptoms, which makes it very complicated. These days there are a lot of people who get the burnout diagnosis. Because of social media and the internet, we have access to everything all the time, which can lead to overstimulation. But because the symptoms are pretty much the same, it is possible you get the wrong diagnosis. Maybe you got the burnout diagnosis, but maybe you have a bore-out. 

As I mentioned, bore-out and burnout symptoms are pretty similar. That is why it’s so hard to find out what you actually have and what you need. These are the most common symptoms:

  • Fatigue
  • Headaches
  • Negative feelings
  • Depression
  • Muscle tension
  • Dizziness 
  • Anxiety
  • Insomnia

More specific bore-out symptoms

  • Boredom: Employees with bore out often feel bored and uninterested in their work.
  • Lack of motivation: They may feel a lack of motivation to complete their work or take on new projects.
  • Procrastination: Bore out can also lead to procrastination, where employees delay completing their work or take longer than necessary.

Preventing and treating a bore-out

To prevent bore-out, it is essential to listen to your body and your needs. Ask yourself if the job fulfils you. Are you still happy with your body? Or when you are in school, find ways to challenge yourself every now and then. You don’t always have to ask your boss or teacher for more work. There are other ways to challenge yourself. Maybe you try to learn a new language (on DuoLingo) or learn how to play an instrument. This way you stimulate yourself.

I once heard that someone had this job and all this person had to do was to sit at a desk and wait for any packages to be delivered to this company. Most of the day, this person was doing some online shopping or other personal stuff. This sounds great, but if you are never being challenged you will get bored eventually. 

  • Find a job that fits you. Or study something that brings you joy and still challenges you a bit.
  • Challenge yourself in your own time, like learning a new language or trying new recipes.
  • Go out and see people. Or just go alone to a bar.
  • Stop following the same routine every day
  • Find new tasks you can do. Maybe ask your boss for extra responsibility

As you can see, it is not easy to find whether you have a burnout or a bore-out. For burnout, you need less stimulation, and with a bore-out, you need more stimulation. One way to find out is to see a doctor and ask for help or maybe keep a journal to write down your feeling. Maybe this way you will find out if you need more stimulation (or not). 

But of course, it is better to avoid it. One way to avoid this is to listen to your body. When you notice you feel bored a lot of the time at work, look how you can change that. Listening to your body is always good. Sometimes we are too distracted and somehow we stopped living in the moment. We are always focused on things in the outer world and we stopped looking inwards. But that is what you have to do if you really want to take care of yourself.

Photo by Hernan Sanchez on Unsplash



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