Sunday, December 7, 2014

Fie, boredom! En garde!

“Is life not a thousand times too short for us to bore ourselves?” 
Friedrich Nietzsche

I like to think of myself as an adventurous person. Much of the time I feel a pretty mean mischievous streak running through me. The kind that shoots up from the ground, through your toes, and out your eye balls. Adventure. Mystery. The Great Unknown. It's pretty sexy actually. And boy, do I have stories! When I lived in Juneau, Alaska I helicoptered onto a glacier, drove by a bear on the side of the road, and counted 18 bald eagles in a single tree. In the Dead Sea in Israel I stripped naked with 1200 other people from around the world to be photographed by a famous photographer as the sun rose. I ate a lot of "street meat" in Shanghai. Last year I went sky diving. This last September I produced a TEDxTalk with over 900 people in attendance.

All this have I done, but nowadays I feel my mischievous streak running dry. I feel the adventurer in me shriveling from neglect. I spend a disproportion amount of time in the morning curled in bed and glued to my phone. I suddenly find myself leading . . . <gulp> . . . a boring life.

A boring life is predictable, it's measurable. Living the boring life, I wake up as usual, barely get out of bed as has become habit, let the hours pass by and then it's nighttime, which means it's bedtime and I've read all of Facebook twice or more and I haven't showered, just like the day before. Sometimes the biggest challenge is not enough milk for my coffee. This sort of boring life is scared of the risks that come with even the smallest adventure. Risks, as you know, can be very scary. A boring life is really just a safe life - and an empty one.

Sometimes it can be a hell of a challenge to break my boredom spell. So I asked y'all, How do you make your life more interesting? Here's what I got:

...when I was a child, at the dinner table, my father would ask me, "What did you accomplish today?" And I had to have an answer. So, each day, I found new things to see, do read, etc. - and new people to get to know. It got to be a habit, which has led to a very interesting life. 
If you open your heart, your eyes. Your mind and are curious, you will live an interesting life. Most of what makes life interesting is below the surface and must be mined with the above attributes. 
Think less, do more. 
By actually doing the things your heart tells you to. 
Embrace everything. 

At the center of this boredom question lies that pesky issue of self worth. Add enough self doubt to any scenario and I watch even my greatest passions go completely limp. (More on limp passions another day.) But I'm finally beginning to outsmart myself! I believe that doubts and other emotions are real, I also believe that they are self-made. You know the saying "there are two sides to every story"? Well there is more than one way to view a day. Victim or conquerer, beloved or not, curious or numbed. Staying adventurous is about perspective. In the end I believe that we are responsible for giving ourselves interesting lives. It is how we see, not what we see. Then, if we choose to seek more outside the rooms we are in, or the beds we are in, we shall go to them. I think the solution is "Think more, do more. Be more." Be kind to yourself. And for godssakes, doubt less!

So En Garde, Boredom! Fie, fie! I no longer have any use for you!

Oh and by the way, when you find that Dead Sea picture, look for me. I'm front and center ;)

1 comment:

  1. It seems like you are referring to boredom as the death of your adventures. I'm not sure if safety and boredom are opposite to risk and adventure. A boring life can sometimes be fulfilling if you need time to recover from the risky parts. Routine is a beautiful thing, not a curse, and most people crave it.

    If you were the kind of person to once run naked in the dead sea, or jump out of a plane, then the lack of those adventures doesn't make you any less of that person.

    The adventurous you is not dead. Maybe she's just hibernating, waiting for the next adventure to present itself. What would kill the adventurous you is doubting you are that person. Which you addressed. So good! You're geared up and ready to go for risky business (hehehe).

    However, when things are crazy and unpredictable, you may miss those hours you spent in bed on Facebook. Beds can be comfy and welcoming. Your boredom might miss you when you run off naked somewhere.