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  • Writer's pictureMarine Lienard

The importance of getting bored for children: Nurturing creativity and resilience

In our fast-paced, technology-driven world, the idea of encouraging children to get bored may seem counterintuitive. After all, we live in an age where entertainment is at our fingertips, with a constant barrage of video games, apps, and streaming services vying for our attention. However, embracing the concept of allowing children to experience boredom has its own set of benefits. Boredom can be a powerful tool for fostering creativity, resilience, and self-discovery. In this article, we will explore the importance of allowing children to get bored and how it can positively impact their development.

A seemingly bored boy looking out of the window

  • Fostering creativity

Boredom can be the spark that ignites creativity. When children have nothing to do and are left to their own devices, their brains are free to wander and explore. In the absence of structured activities, children are more likely to daydream, tinker with objects, or simply let their imaginations run wild. This unstructured time allows them to think outside the box, come up with new ideas, and invent their own games and stories.

Creativity often emerges when children are faced with the challenge of filling their time with something meaningful. In this way, boredom can be a catalyst for artistic endeavours, problem-solving, and original thinking.

  • Developing resilience

Boredom also teaches children an important life skill: resilience. In a world where instant gratification is the norm, boredom offers a valuable lesson in patience and persistence. When children experience boredom, they learn to cope with a mild form of discomfort, which, in turn, builds emotional resilience.

Resilience is the ability to adapt and bounce back from adversity. It's a skill that can help children navigate the challenges they'll encounter throughout their lives. By dealing with the minor discomfort of boredom, children learn to confront and manage more significant challenges effectively.

  • Encouraging self-discovery

Boredom can be a gateway to self-discovery. When children have the freedom to explore their own interests and passions, they may stumble upon activities or hobbies they genuinely enjoy. These moments of self-directed exploration can lead to a deeper understanding of themselves and their unique talents.

In a world filled with distractions, children may never have the opportunity to discover their passions if they aren't given the chance to experience moments of boredom. Boredom can act as a blank canvas on which children can paint their interests and desires, helping them uncover hidden talents and passions.

  • Enhancing problem-solving skills

Boredom often requires children to find ways to entertain themselves, which can be a valuable exercise in problem-solving. Without a ready-made solution at their fingertips, children must devise creative solutions to their own boredom. This process of trial and error can sharpen their problem-solving skills and boost their ability to think critically.

Problem-solving is a fundamental life skill that extends far beyond the realm of childhood boredom. It empowers children to approach challenges with confidence and adaptability, providing a strong foundation for future success.

  • Building independence

Boredom encourages independence. When children are left to manage their own free time, they learn to rely on themselves for entertainment and fulfilment. This sense of independence can be a powerful tool in building self-confidence and self-reliance.

By navigating their boredom without constant adult intervention, children become more capable of making decisions, setting goals, and taking responsibility for their own well-being. These skills are essential for their development into self-sufficient, competent adults.

While it may seem tempting to fill every moment of a child's day with structured activities and electronic entertainment, it's crucial to recognise the value of allowing children to experience boredom. Boredom can be a powerful catalyst for creativity, resilience, self-discovery, problem-solving, and independence. By letting children embrace moments of boredom, we can help them develop the skills and qualities they need to thrive in an increasingly complex and demanding world. In doing so, we empower them to become well-rounded, resilient, and imaginative individuals.

Marine, mother and founder of St Pancras Recruitment


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