Permission to Bored?

Your life is a ship and all the possibilities are as vast as the ocean.

Blah blah blah.

All right, all right. Let’s just assume for a moment that your life is a ship.

Cruise ship, battleship… No matter what the ship, there are days when the weather is mild, the sea is calm, and there is nothing but you, your crew, and miles of empty ocean. It can be boring. Mundane. Repetitious. Boring.

Did I say that already?

Cap'n Jezebel No-beard in her finest evening wear.

Even the pirate ship’s captain – Jezebel No-beard – has days when she feels her entire crew are scurvy dogs. The decks are long overdue for a swabbing. No one is up for a lashing. The next port for looting is still many nautical miles away.

The wind dies down and the sails luff (that’s a real word, I swear).

When I am bored and feeling uninspired, frustration sets in and “compare and despair” mode runs full steam ahead. Why aren’t I wildly busy or madly prolific like everyone else? Why isn’t my phone ringing off the hook or my calendar filled with client calls? Why didn’t I write that transcendent blog post or think to implement that amazing idea? When I’m bored, I begin to feel like the entire world is producing brilliance while I am sitting on my couch watching 30 Rock reruns, eating Pirate’s Booty, and wishing Tina Fey were my sister.

Sometimes I get so bored, even the thought of having a full and busy schedule seems tedious and lackluster to me.

The reality is that standing at the helm – be it as ship’s captain or as business owner – can be quiet and unexciting. Yet from boredom comes invention, creation, and imagination. When we are standing aboard our ship, staring out to sea, stories are told, ideas unfold, schemes are hatched. Boredom is impermanent. It indicates a period of marination, while the juices seep in and make what’s about to come even more delicious.

Give yourself permission to be bored. Remove judgement, release pressure, and take the time to batten down the hatches. Boredom is the calm before the storm, when the waves will make the wayfaring potentially more risky, yet infinitely more exciting.

Yaaaargh.