In this article, it will be discussed why some people might experience feeling empty and bored. It will explain what those feelings are, what can cause one to feel bored and empty, or what can it be related to.
Aside from that, the article will discuss what can be done as a way to cope with feeling bored and empty.
What is boredom?
Boredom is a common feeling, it is a sense of not being satisfied or interested in something. It is a feeling one might get when they have a lot of energy to direct to activities, but don’t have a place to put that energy in.
Boredom can happen for many reasons. It might be that you are not getting enough brain stimulation because you feel like you don’t have a choice or control over what you need to do, as well as not having a good perception of time, and not having different sources of stimulation. It can also be caused by poor nutrition.
With children, boredom can happen mostly when they feel like they are not stimulated enough, have been doing the same thing for a long time, when they lose interest in something or it might be confusing to them.
Anyone can experience boredom throughout their life, what is important to pay attention to is how frequently one feels bored and how long does it lasts. When it lasts for a longer period, it might be a sign of depression.
What does it mean to feel empty?
A person might experience feeling empty. Like there is no feeling running through them, they feel spaced out. It can be a fleeting sensation that can be caused by exhaustion or lack of sleep, which can make you feel without any energy.
Or it can be a sign that you went through something in your life that left you with little left. It could be a breakup, or you are grieving the loss of someone you love, but it can make you feel like the person that left took everything you had inside, and now you feel empty.
If you relate to those, it might be that you are experiencing a fleeting sense of emptiness, and although it might be hard to deal with it, with rest and time, it can improve.
But if that is not the case, and you have a constant sense of emptiness in you, that you can’t figure out where it came from, it might be that you are facing a depressive episode, since one of its main symptoms is leaving the person with this feeling of emptiness.
What can cause me to feel bored and empty?
Some factors can cause a person to feel bored and empty as shown before, but once a person realizes that they are feeling like that for a while and that it is causing them to have difficulty in doing everyday activities, it might be a sign of depression.
So let’s understand what depression is.
Depression is a mental illness that can cause a person to experience an intense sense of sadness, in it a person can also lose interest in things that used to be a source of pleasure to them. What can sometimes resemble boredom.
Aside from that, people with depression can often feel empty, with no purpose, and a lack of hope for the future or their lives.
Depression affects about 5% of the world’s population and can happen to people at any stage of their life. But some factors may make it easier for a person to develop depression. For example, women tend to have a higher risk of getting depressed than men.
Aside from that, people that have a history of depression in their family, usually present more risk of having it as well. People that are experiencing traumas, such as the loss of a loved one or a divorce, are also more susceptible to developing depression.
Not only that, but people that present an imbalance in their brain chemistry or people that have gone through previous depressive episodes, also have a higher chance of facing depression.
People can experience depression in different forms, and it can have different intensities from one person to the next, but for a person to be considered depressed, they should be intensely experiencing its symptoms for two weeks or more. The main symptoms of depression are:
- Change in eating pattern
- Change in sleeping pattern
- Lack of ability to focus
- Lack of pleasure in activities the person used to enjoy
- Excessive crying or inability to cry even when one wants to
- Thought of death and suicidal thoughts
How can I cope with being bored and empty?
When you are paying attention to how you feel, and how often you feel an emotion, it can help you understand better what is going on with you. Sometimes journaling can help you with that, it will be a way to establish patterns of feelings and thoughts.
So if you did that, you could have realized that you have been going through short periods of feeling bored and empty, or that it might be something more intense, and you are considering the possibility of being depressed.
Let’s take a look at what can be done in both cases!
If it’s a fleeting feeling of boredom and emptiness
If you realize you’ve been feeling bored and empty as a reaction to how your life is at the moment, there are some things you can do to cope with it.
It is all about self-care. Try to find a way that suits you better to do your activities, you can divide them into smaller ones, look for new activities that will make you feel more alive, and that will stimulate you. It can be a new hobby or a new role at your job.
Find people to be around that also stimulate you and with whom you can also share your feelings.
But what if I’m feeling depressed?
There are many ways one can cope with depression and the sense of emptiness and lack of interest that comes with it.
If a person feels that this is impairing their life, it might be a moment to look for a psychiatrist and maybe consider medication treatment, this will help reduce the symptoms of your depression, allowing you to feel it less intensely.
It might also be a good idea to look for therapy. Having a safe space to talk, where you will feel supported can have a great effect on you. It will make you feel more understood, and figure out what triggers you to feel worse and what strategies you can use to deal with it.
Aside from that, you can bring some new activities to your life that might help. Like bringing some exercise into your life. It can help you focus on your body and breathing, it can also give you a sense of improvement in your well-being because of the endorphins you’ll get from it.
And since sometimes it might be hard to keep to your chores when depressed, it might be a good idea to divide your tasks into smaller ones, it can help you not feel so frustrated, and also give you a sense of accomplishment when you do them.
Breathing exercises and meditation can help you focus more on yourself than on the sadness and thoughts running through your head. It might even help you relax and with that, sleep better.
Frequently Asked Question(FAQ): Why do I feel empty and bored?
Can boredom cause a person to feel empty?
It can be that at some point, once a person experiences an intense sense of boredom, that causes them to think they might not have a purpose in their life, it might lead them to feel empty.
This might happen because you feel like your actions have no meaning, so you are putting energy into things that don’t speak much to you, leaving you with a sense of void.
Can boredom be a form of sadness?
Not necessarily. Although if shown persistently, boredom can be a sign of depression, it is most common for it to lead to sadness.
Boredom can make you have less initiative and less focus on what to do, so it can lead you to feel sad, sometimes tired, and even more irritable, since you might have energy inside you to do things, but not know where to direct it to.
Is sadness the same as feeling empty?
No, feeling sad and feeling empty are different experiences, although they can happen at the same time.
Sadness is a feeling, but emptiness is a sense a person gets like they are drained of everything, even their feelings, they might be unable to feel sadness, happiness, and so on. A person that is feeling empty, might be closer to the feeling of apathy than sadness.
And although one can lead to the other, it is important to understand the difference between each of them so you can have a better notion of how your emotional state is at the moment.
Can a boring life lead to depression?
A boring life doesn’t lead, necessarily, to depression. It depends on how the person is open to dealing with this sense of boredom. Some people might just continue living their lives without thinking of ways to make it better, and that, in the long hall, might cause a person to develop depression.
They might start feeling as if they lost the purpose of their lives, as well as apathy, lack of motivation, sadness and if that goes on for long, they can lose touch with their emotions and develop depression.
Is boredom related to another mental illness instead of depression?
Yes, boredom can be also related to Attention-Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder. It can cause a person to be anxious, and agitated. Because of it, they tend to have a lot of energy, but at the same time difficulty focusing.
They tend to get bored easily, especially in things that demand attention to detail, because they may feel frustrated when doing those things. It might be important for them to be followed by a professional.
This article it was explained what it means to feel bored and empty, not only that, the article showed what can cause one to feel like that, differentiating what is a common way of feeling bored from what can be a sign of mental illness.
The article also enlightened ways a person can cope with feeling bored and empty, and when it is time to look for professional help.
If you have any questions or comments about this article, feel free to write it in the space below.