In Defense of A Boring Life

Everywhere you look there’s an invitation to a more exciting life.

Commercials and advertising seem to promise a life of more fulfillment, excitement, and joy. Apps and services promise to remove the boredom of data entry and tracking your email. Even people seem to talk about themselves so that you can see how entertaining and entertained they are all the time.

We do this because we don’t want to be boring. I think the reason people don’t want to be boring is

1) They’re afraid it’s a form of stagnation
2) They’re afraid they’re missing out of life
3) They’re afraid if they’re boring their lives won’t matter

But this isn’t what being boring is at all.

But excitement isn’t really all that it’s cracked up to be.

Here’s what I notice about excitement:

1) It’s hard to maintain –
When something is exciting it has to shift or keep getting bigger in order for my excitement to grow or even last longer than a few minutes.

2) It’s often coupled with stress and/or drama –
The most ‘exciting’ relationships I’ve had are the ones that were also the most painful and stressful. When my business is really ‘exciting’ I’m also often on edge and pushing myself pretty hard.

3) It rarely creates long term satisfaction –
Moments of excitement are often followed by either a longing for more excitement or a feeling of being let down or simply down about life in general.

But if you’re not going to be ‘exciting’ then what are you going to be?

Well boring. And boring has gotten a bad rap I think.

Boring is actually pretty amazing.

Here’s what I notice about boring:

1) My life feels even and stable
When things are boring things are usually going pretty well. There are few/no active crises in my life.

2) I tend to be in a pattern of stabilized behavior
I have a routine, I mostly follow that routine, there aren’t a TON of disruptions.

3) It invites a deep reflection
When things are boring the stuff in the background the stuff I tend to ‘avoid’ dealing with begins to surface. This background work is hard work that isn’t glamorous. It’s the work of healing, of self-love, and of slow human growth. This stuff isn’t always sexy and exciting but it’s pretty vital to lead a healthy life.

So what will you choose, exciting or boring?