Boredom. That unmistakable feeling of utter and complete monotony. Lying prone on your pillow-y couch refusing to move for, what seems like, an eternity because tedium has set in. Boredom. All games. All activities. All anything seems like a task too heavy to perform. Boredom.
But the wait is over - the answer to boredom has been found. This is not a magic elixir or a fly-by-night scheme. The answer to boredom is solved in these 4 easy steps:
1. Be curious
Let your mind go. Let your imagination soar. Let your natural curiosity free of its self-imposed restrictions. Ask questions. Seek answers. Have a desire to know, to understand, to learn. A hunger for knowledge. A thirst for understanding.
In short, people who are curious have a thirst for knowledge and a desire to enrich their understanding on a wide variety of topics.
Suggested reading on curiosity: A Curious Mind: The Secret to a Bigger Life by film producer, Brian Grazer (A personal favorite in my collection)
2. Take action
At some point, you have to put the book down and put the idea to the test. Apply the content. Put words into action.
People of action are rarely bored. They just don’t have time for boredom because they don’t sit around doing nothing long enough to get bored in the first place. Their lives are full of challenges and meaningful activities. They do interesting things and get into what they do.
Often times, people sacrifice their curiosity at the altar of inaction. The world is at our fingertips, yet we wonder and never learn, we are curious and never look, we don’t know and never ask, we want to and never try.
Suggested reading on action: Take Action! by Hung Pham
3. Be adaptable
If you don’t like what’s on TV, turn it off! If your plans aren’t working out, do something else. Think outside the box.
If the game of tag gets rained out, play it inside. If the library doesn’t have the exact book you’re looking for, ask the librarian for help picking a similar book. And if you want to get way outside the box, if the song currently playing on the radio doesn’t suit your fancy, play the Russian Roulette of radio by hitting the “Seek” button on your car stereo and listen to where it lands.
Don’t be a victim to inflexibility anymore; learn to adapt, move on and be happy!
Suggested reading on adaptability: Adaptability: The Art of Winning in an Age of Uncertainty by Max McKeown
4. Be spontaneous
When I was a kid, I would often go to my grandfather’s farm on the weekend for two reasons: (A) he had really cool farm equipment like a combine tractor, owned all sorts of farm animals I only read about in books (pigs, cows, etc.), allowed me to eat anything I wanted and (B) all of A was awesome. More often than not, I had no idea I’d be going until he was at school picking me up.
This is the essence of being spontaneous – doing something unexpected where the only expected outcome is fun.
If you fear under-preparation more than you desire the thing you’re preparing to do, you decrease the likelihood of it ever getting done. Plans will lead to backup plans, which will need plans to prepare for additional planning.
Be spontaneous once in a while! It won’t kill you to simply act on a few unexamined whims from time to time!
(**Legal note: MIS is not responsible for any adverse effects caused by being spontaneous.**)
It won’t be long before your newfound spontaneity will drive boredom to move out and find someone else’s life to bother.
Suggested reading on spontaneity: Trying Not to Try: Ancient China, Modern Science, and the Power of Spontaneity by Edward Slingerland
1. What do you do to overcome boredom?
2. What would you have added to help end the epidemic of boredom?