A group of scientists from the University of Sussex found interest in what people are least interested in, focusing on several aspects of everyday life. The study by Wijnand van Tilburg, Eric Igou, and Mehr Panjwani was recently published in the Personality and Social Psychology Bulletin.
In the study, the researchers claim that there was an unmet need for research.
They said: “The underlying psychological processes and consequences of perceiving a person as “boring” have been largely unexplored.”
The researchers focused on the occupations, hobbies, and personal characteristics that people ascribed to stereotypically boring others.
For the purpose of the study, they conducted five experiments, involving over 500 people.
They found that the most boring professions, were accountancy, data analysis, and insurance.
On the contrary, acting, science, and journalism were the least boring jobs.
Regarding hobbies, the scientists claim that going to church, watching TV, and animal observation such as bird watching are among those that are considered the most boring.
These hobbies surpassed even stamp collecting in the ‘boring-meter’.
Another characteristic found to be perceived as boring were the place of residency.
As it turns out, people who live in medium-sized towns are perceived as the most boring.
Moreover, people who smoked, talked a lot, and complained often, were also found to be seen as boring.
Ultimately, the researchers came to the conclusion that people with these characteristics are seen by others as lacking interpersonal warmth and competence.
Also, they ended up that people perceived as boring were socially avoided.
Surprisingly, they even found that people who are forced to spend time with ‘boring’ people, ultimately wanted to be compensated for their time.
According to the researchers, these results suggest that “being stereotyped as a bore may come with substantially negative interpersonal consequences.”