24 December 2014

“The devil finds work for idle hands” is an old adage but one that still rings quite true. When we have nothing to engage us or challenge us, that’s when boredom sets in. In many ways, it’s probably one of the most destructive emotions.

WebI wonder how many crimes are committed through boredom, especially when it comes to young people. Personally, I don’t believe anybody is inherently good or bad, but if you grow up without a passion or a set of activities to take part in then surely you’re at a disadvantage. This is one of the reasons I rank sport so highly for schools, and why local sports charities have such a success rate at turning young people’s lives around. They stoke up a fire inside these kids and give them focus and drive.

I think this is also true when it comes to the workplace. If someone’s productivity has dropped, for example, or they are acting out of character, it’s worth asking whether there’s a chance they’ve become bored and need a new challenge.

It really pays to motivate and inspire your troops as a business leader and – if you’re a parent – you’ll know that the same goes for your kids, especially during the Christmas holidays. So ditch the iPads and the television and get outside and play. Otherwise, those little hands might find themselves idly finger painting the walls or moulding play dough over your brand new carpet…

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