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THE BENEFITS OF BEING BORED

Reading time: 2 minutes
Thinking time: maybe 30?

Yesterday I got really bored. So incredibly bored it made me feel sad and lonely. Not lonely as in missing other people, but lonely as in missing perspective. A bit helpless even. Me against an angry world. And although I love my clients, I was not looking forward to another week in my temporary home office slash ‘taken over by dossiers and too much office boxes living room’. Feeling slightly disconnected (not) celebrating Kings day as well, even though I am a Belgian in the Netherlands. I felt so unbelievably bored that even the sunny weather couldn’t make me feel any better.

Following my own rules as a coach, I got as busy as possible. Told myself: “Take the lead, focus, be grateful.” Finished reading my book. Played some piano. Rode my bike (and definitely ate too much ice cream). Yet nothing seemed to help me get rid of that annoying feeling.

Ups and downs

I must confess that working from home and the whole social distancing thing has left me with some repeated ups and downs lately. I know I’m not the only one. One day I am perfectly fine. Full of ideas. Nothing to complain about as my coaching business remains up and running. The next day, although fundamentally nothing has changed, I see no more light at the end of the tunnel. Convinced I have not much to look forward to. I guess me being the endless optimist, with my glass half full and an ‘I can do it all’ mentality, I didn’t develop the right handles to deal with this unknown emotion of not having any (real) plans at all? I’m always on the move! And in my (usual) mind you always have a choice.

Anyway, that’s not how it felt yesterday.

I was angry as well. It took me years to find enough trust in others and myself to be able to build true meaningful relationships. In business and personal. Now that I’m ready to relate, I’m not allowed to do so. And although, for many years, I have been an advocate for working and coaching online, I am tired of seeing others trough that small video screen. A lousy feeling even my newest gold-colored MacBook can’t soften. I am ready to get out again. Out in the street. Out in the world. Traveling. Meeting others in person. Hugging. Kissing. Yet all reality gives us right now is the need to be patient. To stay safe. And stay home.

At night, talking to a friend, he sent me an article: ‘Why it is good to be bored from time to time’. I’m so grateful to him for doing that. Sometimes you just need that one gentle push in the good direction.

The article mentioned several benefits of being bored: increased creativity (which makes me remember my weekly ‘feet-on-your-desk’ principle in order to think more strategically), feeling more calm and happy (I wasn’t that happy nor calm but undoubtedly still loading batteries), better concentration and even more confidence in the long run.

A matter of Personal development

The one benefit that stood out for me the most was that being bored enhances your personal development. Reading that made me laugh out loud. Isn’t that what my job in fact is all about? (But hey, I’m only human too) Exactly what I needed to hear. They called boredom a ‘silent self-reflection’. Silent it was. And reflecting indeed. But oh boy, did it make me think.

My life motto is ‘you’re always in the right place, even if it feels as if you’re not’. That one benefit in the article, referring to personal development, made me understand this boredom was exactly my right place. And that there was nothing I could do to change it. So I went to bed early, believing that all is okay for now. That I am okay. And life is okay. I read some of my old posts and decided I should listen to my own advice more often. That is why I’m sharing some of my old writings with you. Not to show you how good I am, but hoping to inspire you to understand that even bad moments have their reasons, and for you to be able to make the best of every moment. Even the bad.

My advice, to you and myself: hold on, dear human, you are exactly where you need to be right now. Just breathe. All is well.

Sofie


About me – Being a certified executive and personal coach, I am associated to the Marshall Goldsmith Stakeholder Centered Coaching team and owner of the global executive coaching practice BigFish4.me where I am working on an ambitious scale-up plan now that I’ve learned to ‘not having to do it all on my own’. Next to that I’ve co-founded thehouseofgrowth.org in December 2018 and started working some hours a month for my old love, the Adecco Group (LHH) as well as for one of the biggest Dutch coaching practices in Amsterdam. My passions include playing my quarter grand piano and messing around with acrylic paint on large sized linen canvas. When I’m not catching some proverbial Big Fish, for now I’ve replaced the gym for my 29-er bike and I am loving it. But then again, I am still luckiest doing what I do best, challenging others and myself to perform at ‘our’ best

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IF YOU CAN’T LET GO, LET IT BE

A BEGINNERS GUIDE TO PERSONAL LEADERSHIP

HOW TO LIVE FORWARD

SOUL SEARCHING FOR EXECUTIVES

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