It’s 2 pm, and I’ve just returned to my desk after eating a salami and toasted cheese sandwich (*Ahem. I mean, a salad and a can of tuna) on my 30-minute lunch break.
“I could go a nap now” is my first thought, followed by: “I wonder if anyone would notice if I just crept under my desk for a minute?”.
I have a 9-5 desk job from Monday to Thursday. It’s not my most favourite thing to do with my time, but my boss is pretty easy going, it pays my bills and keeps me away from living a life of squalor – so I endure.
I’ve noticed something though, and it’s been on my mind the last few weeks. Tiredness and fatigue have been stalking me over the years and I’m starting to detect a pattern. See, I generally only feel overcome by fatigue between the hours of 9-5 pm…. weekdays.
Yeah I know, interesting.
What I mean is, I can be dead exhausted while sitting at my desk all day but, the minute it’s home time, I skip happily down those office steps to my car to drive away at high speed. My windows go down, and my iphone blasts out some Frank Ocean tunes. I’m happy AF (as fuck) after 5 pm hits and I’m grinning from ear to ear thinking:
“I might just stop in at the shops and get some new scatter cushions for the lounge”.
That afternoon-slump-girl has now ‘clocked off’, put herself to bed, only to return again at 9 am the next morning.
You know what I’ve decided that daily fart-cloud of fatigue is?
B O R E D O M.
I’m not tired. In fact, I’m quite a well-abled young woman, in pretty close to perfect health and I bet you are too.
My iron deficiency doesn’t impact me THAT much, or the early morning starts. That’s not the reason I can’t seem to sit up straight at my desk all day or the reason I make careless, silly, spelling mistakes come 2 pm. Nor is it why I find getting up from my chair and walking to the water cooler to fill up my water bottle S U C H a physical battle.
No. The reason this fatigue follows me around, is because I’m bored and I see the way my colleagues battle with the same dilemma. When we aren’t able to express ourselves or work on something we feel passionate about, we ‘check-out’ and instead go about our day as if we’re on ‘auto pilot’. Everything starts to feel a little monotonous and depressing. You know it, your mind knows it and your body knows it.
Erica Anderson, contributor to Forbes, says:
I’ve come to think that boredom is so dreadful for us because it’s the antithesis of what we’re made to feel. Humans are designed to be fully engaged. Think about it: when you’re completely absorbed in something, it feels wonderful. Totally into solving a problem, skiing down a mountain, being in love: all wonderful…
Mundane, loveless, work-routines – however – are bloody lethal.
The essence of being bored is to not be fully present. When you’re bored, your body may be present, but your heart and mind are probably absent, fantasizing about that show you’re going to binge-watch when you get home or the gym workout you’re putting together in your head (that you’ll probably skip out on again). Just kidding. I have faith in you.
It’s okay; I’d say that 80% of the human race is currently doing the same (or has been there before). I figure we all have three choices:
- make your work environment more ‘homely’, ‘exciting’ and enjoyable by re-designing your work space. Bring in some plants and flowers, go crazy with some magazine cut outs and a pin board – whatever is going to make your 8-hour work day more enjoyable;
- take more of an interest in your job and your work by reminding yourself what it is that you loved about it in the beginning; or
- If you’re mind’s like: “Nah – can’t, there’s nothing left here for us mate” then, I think you know what you gotta do.
Choice is yours.