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Ways to combat boredom in July!

July is a quiet month at Saint Mary-of-the-Woods.

Activities slow down and many stay inside to avoid the heat. It is a time for the Sisters of Providence to take time off, visit family or go on retreat.

The month of July has been dedicated to finding ways to stay busy and not get bored. Alan Caruba was a public relations consultant and freelance writer who created the Boring Institute in the mid-1980s, which was then followed by creating National Anti-Boredom Month.

Laughing it up are Sister Claire Hanson, Providence Associate Sheila Donis and Sister Teresa Costello.

In 2019, Columbia University hosted the symposium, “Boredom: Behavioral and Clinical Implications,” hosted by the Research Cluster on Curiosity. The study points out that boredom, when temporary, can spark creativity because the mind is free to roam.

However, when boredom persists, it can lead to or contribute to existing feelings of anxiety, loneliness, anger, poor work performance and an increase in risky behaviors like careless driving, thrill-seeking and addictions, among others.

Fight the Boredom!

There are many ways to combat boredom, including:

  • Visit a friend or family member who you have not connected with in a while,
  • Go to a museum or new exhibit,
  • Schedule a game night,
  • Get creative – try painting, crocheting, or an art class,
  • Start a new exercise routine,
  • Join a book club,
  • Tackle that messy closet, garage or room,
  • Pick up a cookbook and learn something new,
  • Plan a vacation,
  • Make a bucket list and start checking off items, and
  • Find a place to volunteer!

Volunteering not only helps to fight boredom, it is a great way to be a part of a community.

The Sisters of Providence offer one-time group volunteer experiences, along with short- and long-term opportunities lasting anywhere from one month to several months or more. Group or individual one-time projects could include helping at our annual Summer Book Sale, hosting a car wash, working on the White Violet Center Farm or Providence Food Pantry project, or beautifying the campus by weeding around various shrines and grottos.

It Lasts a Lifetime!

Regularly scheduled volunteers are always needed to visit with long-term care residents at Providence Health Care, work on animal or garden chores at the White Violet Center for Eco-Justice, greet guests at our administrative office, help weekly at Providence Food Pantry or assist sisters with every day tasks like reading or getting to the store.

While National Anti-Boredom Month only lasts for one month, the effects of volunteering can last a lifetime.

When you are ready to learn more or start volunteering, email volunteer@spsmw.org or call 812-535-2878 to get start.

Remember that keeping boredom away is good for your mental health!

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Sarah Knoblock

Sarah Knoblock

A former volunteer herself, Sarah is the Coordinator of Volunteer Services for the Sisters of Providence. For more information on volunteering, contact Sarah at sknoblock@spsmw.org or call 812-535-2878.

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  1. Avatar Mary Montgomery on July 5, 2024 at 8:04 am

    Thanks, Sarah!
    Wonderful article!
    Tonight a few of us are going to 12 Points for Bill Pine’s band and to also hear Richard Goodall of “America’s Got Talent”! 😊🎶

  2. Avatar Denise Wilkinson on July 5, 2024 at 9:22 am

    Thanks, Sarah. I’ve never considered how volunteering can contribute to my mental health. And thanks for being such an effective coordinator of volunteers.

  3. Avatar Paula Modaff on July 5, 2024 at 10:23 am

    Thank you, Sarah. Even though I have had few episodes of boredom in my life, your ideas for staying active and involved are excellent.

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