Even a dream job gets boring sometimes, so when you suffer ennui at work, know you’re not alone. What you choose to do with that boredom will save or sink your day. Falling asleep at your desk or faking sick and going home aren’t the best options. Instead, enlist some gadgets to inject a bit of pizzazz into your work situation. You might be trying to get your brain back on track, or you might want to avoid doing anything else for the afternoon.
Sometimes boredom at work results from your mind sticking to one task for too long. Use an e-reader to dig into a book, a magazine, or an interesting news article for 10 or 15 minutes to generate mental curiosity. Reading is more productive and engaging than watching Vines about silly animals — though sometimes getting in a good laugh is invaluable, too. The new ideas you encounter during your reading will set the wheels of your brain turning again.
When your office doesn’t have the room or the budget for standing desks, the StorkStand offers a great alternative. It’s a miniature standing desk that hooks to the top of your office chair. How does standing help you combat boredom? Your body becomes more engaged when you stand. As long as you’re not hunching, your posture improves, too. Standing is a great way to tackle that drowsy feeling that creeps up in the afternoon. Try walking in place or doing a few leg stretches while using your standing desk.
You’ve seen the commercial: Someone’s on a date, and checks the score of the game by looking only at the edge of their phone. Imagine that scenario, but in the most mind-numbing work meeting. This could be you the next time you have to sit through a PowerPoint presentation. Connect to T-Mobile’s extensive network in case work has personal devices banned from the office Wi-Fi. The Galaxy S7 Edge is a smartphone powerful enough to actually accomplish work tasks if you want to use it that way. It’s also sneaky enough to entertain you while you’re in a dull meeting. How you use it is up to you.
Get your day’s workout done while at work with an under-desk elliptical. These tiny workout machines set your feet pedaling beneath your desk as you type, call, or write. Why should you try this to stave off boredom? You’ll engage your muscles and get your heart rate up, which keeps you from feeling lethargic. Exercise is one of the best ways to clear the cobwebs from your mind. Taking a walk around the office is good for that, too, but some days you simply don’t have time. Plus, doing the under-desk elliptical will be a fun distraction during conference calls.
Some days you’re completely checked out mentally. It’s not the ideal situation, but it happens. When you’re stuck at work and sick, depressed, or so tired you can barely keep your head up, reach for your Bluetooth earbuds. They need to be small enough that you can hide them under your hair, and they must be Bluetooth so no telltale cord gives you away. You’re free to zone out to your favorite tunes while you click between computer screens and pretend to be working.
Maybe your cubicle is causing your workplace boredom. Staring at those fuzzy gray walls all day isn’t the most stimulating work environment. Neither is fluorescent lighting, for that matter. A tablet lets you escape your desk and find a better corner of the office. If your office Wi-Fi is good, take the tablet outside for a while to get some fresh air. You don’t have to let your work slide to eliminate boredom with your surroundings, and the change of scenery will refresh your brain and give you a little productivity boost.
Suffering boredom at work can be horrible. Don’t let it get the best of your day. Get some gadgets to help you focus harder, and a few to help you zone out when your brain needs a rest.