We all feel bored sometimes. I feel it plenty.
For some, it’s too often to be normal.
In reality, boredom is a friendlier mask worn by it’s more domineering form: Fear.
We’re surrounded by seemingly endless cures to this discomfort. Films, games, social media hits, stimulations of all shapes, tastes, and varieties.
Often, because we can’t bear the sensation for even a few minutes, we do things that feel good fleetingly, but once we’re done, we’re back to that feeling.
We feel the same lethargy when we’re back in the ‘real’ world. We feel it with an added dash of shame at the energy we lost to time.
Drinking, partying, eating pastries, smoking, binge TV.
A little indulgent entertainment and a few vices in moderation sure feel good. They help add some spice to life.
But they won’t put an end to that silent thread of bored frustration in the wider picture.
Beyond covering your bases of rest, eating enough, and having your minimum social-interaction needs met, the cure for boredom, and in fact, most of our malaise, is play.
If you’re bored, you aren’t playing.
What do we mean by ‘play’ here?
Play is exploring things without expecting, grasping or wishing for anything.
It is moving; taking action without being crystal clear on where you’re going next.
It is being ok with doing things differently, and having the courage to continue moving through what feels odd; frightening; precarious.
Setting yourself a timed-challenge is a form of play because it forces you to act without planning or overthinking.
Play is letting go.
Most importantly, it is what gives rise to self-expression.
You feel bored because you haven’t allowed for enough self-expression. That’s why it’s such a pain.
We need to express our real selves (without drugs or alcohol) because to do anything else is to deny ourselves as humans. It is a kind of self-abuse.
To block it is to restrict our growth. And when we don’t grow, we can’t be happy.
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