I find it strange when anyone tells me they are bored. There’s so much to do with time and life such that being bored really shouldn’t be an option. Don’t get me wrong. I’m not saying that I’m always working or always being productive, no. I take time out to relax, but usually only after working, and in some cases, as a reward for working, but those ‘downtimes’ are not times when I’m bored or have nothing to do. Boredom is defined as the state of being weary and restless through lack of interest. In other words, you are at a time and place or in a moment in space when/where you don’t know what to do or have nothing to do with yourself or with you; there’s a vacuum between the engagement of yourself with life and you are bereft of ideas or activities to fill this vacuum/void. Sounds harsh, I know, but yeh, I find it very strange because 24 hours never seem to be enough to get things done in a day.
I’ll try to explain how and why people get bored. Let’s look at this scenario. You come home from work, let’s say, have lunch/dinner, and then close your eyes for a bit. Then you are refreshed, and you suddenly or eventually become idle, or something like that. It’s a bit tough to fathom how that happens. Anyway, you become idle; you have nothing to do and you become in need of something to do. If you were at work, and your boss was on your neck to get something done or produce a result, you’d spend your time doing something, whether productive or not; you won’t be idle, and certainly won’t be bored. So why do people get bored? Answer: I’ll put it to you that if you are not at the mercy of, or under the authority of, a boss, and you are on your own time, you’d only ever get bored if you have no real personal ambition. I’m not talking about silly dreams of becoming wealthy and rich or having a big business that reins in cash and all that crap.
Personal ambition is a result of self awareness of ones potential and consequential goal setting to fully utilise that potential to become a better/improved version of yourself either through self application towards accumulating wealth and increasing your financial ability, obtaining an elevation in status either at work or in any other type community, enjoying better personal relationships, giving to society either physically with material resources or sharing and imparting ideas or ideology. These endeavours are expressed through written or unwritten (better written) personal goals which will drive you and keep you up at night such that boss or no boss, you’d spend your time, especially your ‘downtime’, working on getting these results. You’d never get bored. I never get bored. There are times I choose to do nothing productive e.g. watch t.v, but that’s only to help relax and reduce the burden on my mental faculties, or when I need to be social. But once I’m done relaxing, my conscience kicks in and I get back to being productive, or at least, doing something that may/can take me closer towards the goals I have set for myself.
And this is where business comes in. Business, within the context of this article, does not necessarily mean commercial activity, but what I mean is doing something that keeps you occupied; doing something that keeps you ‘busy’. Business is defined as purposeful activity; an immediate task or mission; a particular field of endeavour; a serious activity requiring time and effort and usually the avoidance of distractions. If you never want to be bored again, you must have personal goals and apply yourself towards achieving these goals. Let the goal of personal/self development at least be ‘your business’. By applying yourself to your business there are at least two huge benefits I can think of:
- You become a better version of you, you can earn more, enjoy better relationships, add value to society
- You actually NEVER get bored
I’ll tell you this, and I don’t think I am wrong, only lazy people get bored. People with no personal ambition. Lazy people. I shy away from people who say they are bored because what that means to me is that they are lazy. And I don’t like lazy people. There’s a lot of waste associated with being lazy; waste of time (a critical resource if you are able to understand what exactly it is); lazy people tend to feed off you. They also sap your energy and in the end essentially waste your time. Of course, it is not enough to just define goals; there must also be action. You must work on your goals. Defining goals does not make you not lazy. Not working on your goals is not different from not even setting any goals in the first place. However, you must ensure that the goals you set are based on that which you truly desire for you. These goals must be as a result of self awareness, self-realisation or personal discovery of your potential and how best you can apply them. It’s only then that you’ll have the drive to naturally go after these goals, else you’ll be no different from the lazy person. Don’t set goals because you see others trying to achieve same thing. Don’t set goals because it is the fad, or because you ‘think’ that’s where your passion lies. Set goals because you strongly desire to own the results that will be the product of achieving those goals. Set goals because you’d enjoy working on them. Set goals because pursuing them would help expand your frontier of knowledge and help you learn something new; else, you’d become overwhelmed and distracted and end up being no different from the lazy man, or woman.
Time is a resource, just like money, that must be well spent. It is exactly like money. It needs to be invested. This quote from Elon Musk is a personal favourite “Work hard every waking hour, particularly if you are starting a company. If you do the simple math, if someone else is working 50 hours and you’re working 100 hours, you’ll get twice as much done in the course of the year as the other company”. Time sometimes needs to be given off without the expectation of reward. It needs to be utilised consciously. It cannot be saved, but just like money saved, you’d always have an opportunity to use it. You spend N1,000 wisely today, and you can reap financial reward from it; or you can give it to someone and add some value to their life. Or you can spend it relaxing, which in itself isn’t waste, or you can waste it by thoughtless spending. And so if you spend your time doing nothing or being without conscious applied thought i.e. spend your time thoughtlessly, which is exactly what being bored is, you are wasting a key resource, wasting time, wasting life.
You must decide to do something with your time, all the time. Have a business; remember, not necessarily commercial activity, but something to ‘do’ with your time. When you think you have nothing to do, write, think and write/record your thoughts, read and reflect. If you must watch t.v., do so, but only as a means to relax and let this be limited and ensure it actually helps you to relax (no horror movies). Be a business. You can become a business and transform yourself into a money making machine by learning new skills and getting paid for application of these skills. You can become a business by accumulating knowledge and experiences and sharing socially with others. You can be a business man, or you can be a business, man. Spend your time attending to that business so that nothing is done thoughtlessly. Attend to your business; tend it. Apply your mind to it. Mind it. Mind your business.