Is your life is boring, friend?
Every day the same as the next? Same routine? Same packed lunch? Same profile picture? Same series on Netflix?
When I was in Uruguay I used to get horribly bored. In the early days of not speaking any Spanish, the more compassionate member of the group would lean over and ask in broken English, “Are you boring?”
Neither them nor I appreciated the truth in that adjective mixup. While ego required me to say “No, I’m not boring, I’m BORED!” the bleak reality was that I was, indeed, boring.
You see, not bothering to learn the language leading up to my 12-month exchange, I had subscribed to The Lazy Law, which states,
The lazier you are, the less interesting you will be. Or conversely
The less lazy you are, the more interesting you will be.
You can read that again if you like.
Like most things, people aren’t born interesting. It’s not a gene. It’s a skill. It requires being brave, being uncomfortable, being willing, and being weird. At least a little bit.
It needs you to:
Stop doing uninteresting things, like
- Spending hours on a screen
- Talking about the weather
- Going to the same restaurant
- Having the same conversations
- Driving the same route to work
- Ask questions, whether thoughtful or simple. There’s no need to pretend to know something you don’t.
- Listen carefully to the answers. They might broaden your perspective.
- Read a lot. Fiction too.
Speak your truth
- Share your opinion, especially if you know it’s not the popular one.
- Dress like you. There’s nothing edgy about looking like everyone else.
- Embrace your weird. Imperfection makes you much more fun to be with.
- Tell a good story. Organisations like Toastmasters teach you the skills to entertain and to think on your feet.
Hang out with different people
- Challenge yourself to meet new people. Especially the youth.
- Share something personal.
Learn a new skill
- Whether it’s sharpening your reflexes (like catching a ball or tossing a quick comeback), or exercising your creative muscle (like writing haiku*), make it something that has nothing to do with your career.
- Subscribe to a podcast. News, cooking tips, even trivia, is all conversation fodder.
Have a sense of humour
There is little more refreshing than someone who is able to laugh at themselves. Or at least subscribe to Ben Zander’s rule #6, which is to not take yourself so goddamned seriously.
* about that haiku
It’s a 3-line poem of 17 syllables (5-7-5) that do not rhyme. In keeping with the integrity of this post, I’ve written one here. Just for you.
No logic to them at all
Yes, being interesting is not effortless. It’s hard work. But it’s fun.
You can do it 😉