Lack of something fun/interesting/required
State of inertia causing anxiety or sloth
Excuse to raid the fridge/buy stuff
Currently five months pregnant, I’m being told to “embrace boredom.” To “enjoy the inertia” and to “relish the moments of peace.” After all, before I know it, I’ll have a little bundle of joy/poop in need of constant attention.
As a self-employed person, it’s easy to push the boundaries – especially when there are invoices and proposals to compose (yay!) and tasks to accomplish (yay?). And the truth is, I love my work. Nevertheless, taking my own advice, I work to cultivate hobbies and habits that will make me an even happier and more balanced person, and yet, from time to time, I still experience the sensation of boredom.
Thinking deeply about this sensation, and observing when I encounter it most, I realize that it almost always occurs when I am alone … almost always during a time of transition from a state of high excitement or activity involving others to a state of quiet and solitude.
I challenge you, as I challenge myself, to re-frame boredom. To remove the reaction to the emotional state of boredom and to channel that energy into something rich. To honor time to reconnect with the self and to embrace the opportunity to be self-reflective rather than other-directed.
Take yourself on a walk. Look up a new recipe and test it out. Hit the library and choose a bestseller, or check your Kindle and dig into one of those reads you downloaded with great enthusiasm a while back. Write in a journal. Draw with your calligraphy pen. Contemplate a happy memory. Sing. Meditate.
And if you find it hard to shake the feeling that you should be doing something productive, take a deep breath and let it go. Nurturing yourself is the most productive thing you can do.
If it turns out that doing something concretely productive will nurture you, go for it. Purge that closet. Write that long overdue letter to a friend. Turn the soil in your garden. Feeling better?
What are your favorite benefits of boredom?
Share your wisdom below!