Boredom is based primarily, not on age, income, race, education, employment status or gender, but on a lack of awareness. It seems many of the bored don’t realize the potential of meaningful leisure activities to enhance their lives!
We’re more motivated to take action to change what we’re dissatisfied with if we believe our action will make a positive difference. It’s not that we don’t want to lead richer, more fulfilling lives; we just don’t realize how much we can do about it.
Most of us consider ourselves busy. We might work hard in order to have some free time … and still find ourselves bored when we do.
One reader writes, “I just got a new Harley and, yes, I used the old one, but I’m bored. I worked long hours for years, and I don’t have to anymore. I guess I’m happy enough, but there’s no getting around it — I’m bored.”
We can readily understand boredom at work or school or even church; but when we can choose to do whatever interests us, whatever we find exciting, the reasons for boredom are less obvious.
We can get bored with most anything that becomes routine … or maybe we simply get in a rut and become boring, and fail to realize that we can do something about it. Sex — potentially one of the most passionate and exciting behaviors we can perform — is a perfect example. Even people who complain about wanting more sex can be bored with what sex they have.
We don’t want mundane. We want meaningful.
And while we were trained to do everything from washing dishes to choosing a rewarding career, we could have missed out on choosing life-enhancing activities for our free time.
You probably remember being bored as a kid. What was your caregiver’s response? Maybe you heard, “Go outside and play” or “Do you want to call Johnny?” or “You can watch a movie in your room.”
Or, this is a long shot, maybe you heard something like, “Come with me to the soup kitchen,” or “Aren’t you excited about reading the next classic on your shelf?” or “Let’s take lunch to old Mrs. Smith.”
When we have free time, we can choose meaningful. We can be responsible — to ourselves, our loved ones and our society. We’ll be less bored, less addicted, less unhealthy and less lonely.