February 16 – “A man can stand almost anything except a succession of ordinary days.” (Johann von Goethe)
It seems odd to me to talk and think about a “succession of ordinary days”, when just a week ago I was on a mini-vacation with my wife. And yet, as I was thumbing through a book of quotations this morning, the chapter titled “Average, ‘Boring’ Days” is the one that caught my eye.
This past weekend it was dangerously cold here. Overnight lows dipped well into the negative numbers, with wind chill factors reaching -25 Fahrenheit. It was a weekend to hunker down and stay inside to be certain, despite the fact that the sun shone brightly on both days. I only ventured out on Sunday for a workout at the gym, then quickly retreated to the warmth of my house.
All weekend long I was thinking that I need to get back and do some writing, but nothing was particularly inspiring me. This morning I elected to do my daily workout after work, which gave me a bit more time to consider my entry for the day. It was as I was reading the quotes on boredom that it hit me. I am not depressed this year, I am finding myself to be bored.
The downsides of boredom are numerous. When I am in this state I tend to eat more, and do less. Boredom leads to being sedentary, and the more sedentary I find myself, the more bored I become. It is a negative, self-feeding spiral. The more I succumb to boredom, the more bored I become, and the deeper it takes root in my being.
Thankfully, today I have noted that this is my problem. Now I just need to pull myself out of the pit before I get too deep into it.
Thankfully, I have been bored before, and I have gotten myself out of it. I know that I am the only one who can pull myself up. It’s not about an external force; it isn’t an event that pops up that pulls me out. The fact is that I can, when I am feeling bored, find the boredom in just about anything. No, it won’t be something from outside, it will be something from inside. And, that something is attitude. For me boredom is nothing but a bad attitude about the day. I choose to be unexcited about the world and my life in it, and that is what starts me down the path.
Today my reflection is on boredom, and how I will pull myself out of it. Getting out of boredom isn’t a matter of looking for something exciting to do, it is about finding excitement in what I am already doing. And that is what I plan to do today.