I honestly have no idea why I am still awake at 1am, and bored, except that I probably had that Mocha at Starbucks with Cheri too late in the afternoon. I’ll hit the wall this afternoon, I suppose. A cup of coffee should get me through late afternoon playtime with the girls. Hm. This could be a bad trend.
But I had an interesting conversation while hopping up on caffeine. What is boredom? I’ve been eating more lately and it is just starting to show (beyond the post-pregnancy pounds). I am a bored eater. But seriously, now, how could I possibly be bored?! I am SO busy!
Cheri and I talked about some theories. Boredom for her was a version of braindead. Tired. Too much to process, system shut down. Looking for filler to avoid … something…and not finding it.
I think for me, it is a lack of meaning, not a lack of things to occupy my time. Mindless busyness. I try to be mindful by planning and putting my activities in some sort of context. I haven’t been planning well lately, and so I figured that was causing me to go through my days in this aimless fashion, leading me to bored eating. I think I tend to overcome “boredom” with planning.
Then Cheri shared the way she copes with boredom. She finds a way to intentionally use her spiritual gift (so sorry if you are a friend who isn’t yet a Christ follower — bear with me here — this part won’t make sense. Better yet, don’t bear with me. Believe on Jesus. Message me about it and I’ll tell you more — before I get too far off track here for even 1am). As we talked, we drew mental pictures with each other of how spiritual gifts bring us to interact with people. There are no “Reading” gifts, or “sleeping” gifts, or “cooking fabulous food and eating it” gifts (dang!). Spiritual gifts compel us to relate to people in some way.
And the cool thing about spiritual gifts, is that God uses them in supernatural ways to build the Body. Even when we aren’t trying, or don’t know what specific gift we have.
So, what about the idea of deciding to intentionally look for ways to let God use your gift, specifically to fight boredom or mindless busyness? When I find myself eating ANOTHER handful of almonds (they are good for you, but not in successive gargantuan shovelfuls) because I am just mindlessly changing diapers, cleaning finger paint, planning Ballet birthday parties, and talking to telemarketers, I should look around for ways to use my Exhorter/Admin gifts. Help show Kathryn how to juggle. Call my mom and tell her I am thinking of her. Remember how my choice to stay home will hopefully create a strong bond between me and my daughters. Pray Colossians for someone while I fold laundry. Tell the next telemarketer that he needs Je-e-e-esus! (OK…I know that it is true, and a serious subject, and am not flippant about salvation, so please don’t get mad at me for laughing out loud at the idea of calling telemarketers and witnessing as a diet plan. It is 1am.).
What do YOU think boredom is? How do you fight it? I’d love to get some ideas.