If being bored brings me clarity, bring on the boredom.
In today’s society of efficiency and effectiveness, we all want to work harder to get more and more done. We’re told we need to get as much done as possible and even are convinced to feel bad when we aren’t being productive. Work, work, work… is the formula to get ahead. We fill our schedules up to the max in the name of productivity. We multitask to try to get more done. We can’t just sit and wait on the train, we must shoot that email off or update our social media feeds. Being bored, in a sense, doesn’t really happen much anymore. My last post on boredom focused on getting you in your lane for life — aligning your actions with your mission and purpose. Boredom can be a side effect of not having a mission. It can also be absent in the case of the workaholic with too many activities.
I’ve found myself some days looking at free time in my schedule and dreaming up ways to fill it up. There have been plenty of occasions when I’ve asked myself,”Do I run my life or does my schedule?” Some would laugh, since I make my own schedule, of course. As I’ve embarked on this mission to be productive and impactful with my life I’ve learned a few things about what people today call boredom aka “not having anything to do.”
When I clear my schedule and allow for time just to think a weird thing happens; I get clarity on what matters most. Being super busy can keep us from asking and seeing the big picture. The crazy thing is, many times, we ask ourselves why we’re doing so much. And some will say, family. But actually, in that moment, they may be traveling or away from family. Wow… Working for family, but never seeing family… Doesn’t really add up. When we slow down we see what matters and connect that current moment to it.
Get bored. Slow down and get clarity.
To the overachiever sleep may be seen as a waste of time. “Sleep is for suckas,” some may say. “I grind all the time.” The truth about sleep is it actually helps us be more productive while awake. When you go without adequate sleep simple tasks will become more difficult due to your fatigue. And let’s not mention the stress threshold that is lower when you’re sleep deprived. Lack of sleep leads to fatigue and increased vulnerability to stress. Sleep counters both (stress and fatigue.) Find me a productive person that doesn’t sleep and I’ll start the countdown to their meltdown.
As we slow down we’re able to think more about what we are doing. That may sound intuitive, but ask yourself when’s the last time you actually felt you were choosing to do what you’re doing? Many do things out of obligation or the feeling that they “have to.” Boredom gives us the ability to examine our strategy of activity and align it with our highest self.
Leave some time each day to be bored. Shut off the devices and just think. Turn the schedule off and recharge.
Let’s do less in order to get more done.