The Inspiration of Boredom: An Investigation of the Relationship Between Boredom and Creativity
Hunter, Jennifer Ann
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The present thesis investigated the novel question of whether boredom could inspire creativity through two studies, the first focusing on trait creativity and the second on creative performance. The results reflect boredom and creativity’s complex, potentially null relationship. Study 1 found that trait boredom, controlling for overall personality structure, was not associated with creative personality. Study 2 found that neither state boredom nor the interaction between state and trait boredom was predictive of creative performance. Trait boredom, controlling for overall personality structure, was a positive predictor of curiosity (Study 1), and curiosity in turn was found to be a positive predictor of creative performance (Study 2), suggesting a potential mediated relationship. Future work exploring this possibility is encouraged. Researchers exploring the relationship between boredom and creativity are also urged to assess arousal and regulatory focus. Finally, work exploring multiple, potentially interacting components of creativity–particularly rater characteristics–is proposed.