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Bored and Brilliant: Home

A guide to a UAFS event based on the book Bored and Brilliant by Manoush Zomorodi.

Bored and Brilliant

First there was an experiment, followed by a book.  Here's the description:

"It's time to move 'doing nothing' to the top of your to-do list. In 2015 Manoush Zomorodi, host of WNYC's popular podcast and radio show Note to Self, led tens of thousands of listeners through an experiment to help them unplug from their devices, get bored, jump-start their creativity, and change their lives. Bored and Brilliant builds on that experiment to show us how to rethink our gadget use to live better and smarter in this new digital ecosystem. Manoush explains the connection between boredom and original thinking, exploring how we can harness boredom's hidden benefits to become our most productive and creative selves without totally abandoning our gadgets in the process. Grounding the book in the neuroscience and cognitive psychology of 'mind wandering'--what our brains do when we're doing nothing at all--Manoush includes practical steps you can take to ease the nonstop busyness and enhance your ability to dream, wonder, and gain clarity in your work and life. The outcome is mind-blowing. Unplug and read on."--Dust jacket flap.

Register here

Register to participate by going to the link below:

Register Here

Challenge 1--January 17-23

Challenge One:  Track your digital habits.  Make sure the Screen Time function is turned on in your phone.  (Check your settings.)  Note your daily and weekly average.  Then, armed with this information, please take the survey linked below.


Please take the survey by clicking on the link below as we begin the Bored and Brilliant challenge.


January 24-31

Each day you'll do a different challenge from the list at the right and record your experiences online. You've completed Challenge 1 already. Here's the schedule for the remaining challenges: (See details to the right.)

January 24: Challenge 2

January 25::  Challenge 3

January 26:  Challenge 4

January 29:  Challenge 5

January 30:  Challenge 6

January 31:  Final Challenge

January 31:  Wrap-up

The Book

Challenge 2--January 24

Challenge 2:  Keep your devices out of reach while you're in motion. (No checking your  phone as you walk across campus.)  Record your experiences at the end of the day by clicking the Challenge 2 link below.

Challenge 3--January 25

Photo-Free Day:  Today your challenge is to go an entire day without taking a picture with your phone.  Share your experience with today's challenge (was it hard or easy?) by clicking on the Challenge 3 link below. 

Challenge 4--January 26

Delete That App.  Take the one app you can't live without and trash it. (Don't worry--you'll live.)  Share your experience with this challenge by clicking on the Challenge 4 link below.  Which app did you delete?  Why did you choose it?

Challenge 5--January 29

Today's challenge: Take a Fakecation.  Except for class and required work, put a notice on your phone or computer that you're "out of the office".  You won't be, but you'll be out of touch.

Challenge 6--January 30

Today's challenge is to Observe Something Else.  Reclaim the art of noticing. What do you see around you?

Final Challenge--January 31

The Bored and Brilliant Challenge:  After participating in all the challenges, use your new powers of boredom to make sense of your life and set goals. The final challenge is based on the first 6.  You've observed your digital habits, tweaked a few of them, and gotten a glimpse of life beyond the screen.  Now it's time to put it all together.

1. Think of an aspect of your life that you'd like to deal with but have been avoiding because you were scrolling through Instagram.  It could be small and inconsequential (organizing your junk drawer, rearranging a room) or something bigger like a career change or focus or justifying a vacation.

2. Set aside 30 minutes where you won't be interrupted.  Put away your phone, tablet, laptop or any other digital device.  Put a generous pot of water on the stove and watch it come to a boil.  If you don't have a stove or a pot, find a small piece of paper and write  "1,0,1,0" on it as small as you can until the paper is full.

3. When you have completed Step 2 and are mind-numbingly bored, sit down with a pen and a pad of paper and focus on the issue you identified in Step 1.  Draw or make a list or whatever way you want to record your ideas for a solution to this issue.  You don't have to execute the plan yet--just get your ideas for a brilliant solution down on paper.

Wrap Up--January 31

The Bored and Brilliant Challenge:  After participating in all the challenges, use your new powers of boredom to make sense of your life and set goals.  Please complete a final survey, using the link below.

The library will host a wrap-up event today at 4 p.m. in Library 122.  Please join us to share your experiences with the Bored and Brilliant challenge. We'll give out buttons and serve refreshments to all those who participated.



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Karen Haggard
she, her, hers
Boreham Library 105, 479-788-7245
Schedule appointment: https://uafs.campus.eab.