Do you ever find yourself just plain bored? Lately, and I suppose it’s a symptom of my recent bout of depression (stupid bipolar disorder, be gone!), I have found myself constantly bored. Like, bored out of my ever-loving mind. Like, bored enough that I am going insane and don’t even care that I’m depressed! In that way, I’d guess it’s actually a good thing. I am so bored that ruminating on being bored has become my new, all-consuming pastime.
But I can’t just let that be, right? I mean, this is me we’re talking about. I am constantly moving, always working on something new, learning something new, making my life more interesting and doing what I can to do the same for my loved ones. I used to find such solace in channeling this energy into physical acts: volunteering, throwing parties, organizing everything. As my physical energy has calmed down coming into the winter months (me and cold weather simply do not work well together, even cold weather by South Carolina standards), I have found that I’m still mentally bored and restless but my body doesn’t want to keep up with anything that might alleviate that! So, what do I do, you ask? I’m glad you asked. I make lists. And I try my darnedest to check things off of those lists.
First of all, I went out and bought myself the most pathetic little 5lb. dumbbell to try and work through some my fatigue. Wait a minute – how does that make sense? Well, with fatigue (for me, at least) comes muscle fatigue and I’d like to work against the tide on that one if I can. (I am 35 years old these days and from what I’ve heard, it’s all working against the tide of time from here on out!). So now, when I’m home and bored and zoning out to Hulu at 11pm on a Wednesday, I use my pathetic little weight to try to strengthen my endurance!
I’ve also re-downloaded Duolingo (ugh, I have a years-long on-and-off relationship with that annoying-ass-little owl 🦉). I plan to brush up on my French and Spanish. Like I plan every winter, but hey, with this new boredom streak maybe this will actually be the year!
I have asked for more work at my day job. I have doubled the amount of free-labor I put into social media programs for local businesses (for the fun of it). I’ve considered getting a second job – something in a grocery store or at the mall – just because.
In general, I’ve started trying to focus on my intellectual and physical habits in my “free time” – I’m trying to stop picking at my nails (going so far as to put *gasp* clear polish on them as a deterrent). I’m putting more effort into the look I present professionally (which still involves a lot of hoodies, but better matched hoodies!).
I’m doing my best to drink more water everyday (based on my size and age, I should be getting 64oz a day, which is, like, a lot for a cola addict like me!). I’m considering driving myself even more insane by quitting smoking (shhhh! I haven’t decided yet! It’s hard!).
I still feeling that nagging, persistent voice though – You’re borrrred. You should be doing something productive. I know you’re tired but O. M. G. just pick a project, any project! It never stops. It beats down on you. I don’t have children, our apartment is immaculate at the moment because the second there’s something to clean, we clean it. I’ve rearranged like three times in the last month. My boyfriend, bless his heart, has been very supportive and helpful, especially with the heavy furniture. I create messes just to have something to clean up or organize. Our cats require very little attention!
What do you do when you find yourself beating your brain up against a wall like this? I’ve trying using the time exclusively to write and I find that my restlessness just gets in the way. I’ve spoken with fellow writers and a lot of the advice I’ve gotten is to simply be more gentle with myself, to give myself the free time, to relax.