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How common is it to be frequently bored?


SparklyUnicorn
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Just wondering about this.  I'm SO BORED.  Which gosh I feel kinda weird admitting to that.  I know there are things I can do, but they are either incredibly boring (cleaning?!) or my brain is just too fried (because I just spent hours doing them).  I have a zillion hobbies and yet I still find myself feeling bored A LOT.  I just don't know why or if it's odd or if it means something.

 

I guess I just need to go with it.

 

 

 

 

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Is it possible you aren't bored, but drained?  If your brain feels fried then maybe you need some sort of recharge. Different people recharge different ways.  What things usually recharge your mental and emotional batteries? How long has it been since you've done them? Recharging batteries is different that being entertained and stimulated. Some of those things that recharge people are more active or more passive, but the thing that matters most is whether or not they recharge you.

Edited by Homeschool Mom in AZ
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Is it possible you aren't bored, but drained?  If your brain feels fried then maybe you need some sort of recharge. Different people recharge different ways.  What things usually recharge your mental and emotional batteries? How long has it been since you've done them? Recharging batteries is different that being entertained and stimulated. Some of those things that recharge people are more active or more passive, but the thing that matters most is whether or not they recharge you.

 

sleep?

 

Otherwise I don't know.

 

I mean I spent 3 hours working on some math thing.  I did my homework.  I studied.  I read.  I played my violin for an hour.  I baked, cooked, cleaned, went to the gym.  Played bored games. I am wired and tired at the same time.

 

It's only 6 pm.  If I go to bed now I'll be up at 2.

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The only reason I'm not bored is that I read a lot of books and watch a lot of tv. I feel bored when I'm cooking, I feel bored when I'm showering, I feel bored when I'm cleaning, I feel bored when I'm driving, I feel bored when I'm planning some school stuff (not all of it--some of it is complex enough that I'm fully engaged.)

 

So, I watch a lot of tv while I'm getting ready for the day or eating a meal or cooking or washing dishes. I listen to talk radio or songs I can sing along to while driving. I think most things that I have to do in life are pretty boring. I read while I'm doing my hair or brushing my teeth.

 

There's very little time left over for the non-boring stuff. Photography used to be very non-boring to me, but I spent years learning as much as I wanted to know and now...what? I can take a gorgeous picture of the sunset...but why? What will I do with it? The only pictures I do now that bring me joy are where I take a picture of a person, posed, and then take a picture of an action figure and then merge the pictures together, so it looks like the person is interacting with the action figure. Those pictures are awesome and I love doing them.

 

Other than those pictures, reading books, or watching TV, I feel bored most of the time. I might be busy, but I'm feeling bored. I've often wondered what's wrong with me that I need the constant stimulation of stories not to be bored? I spend a lot of in-between time here--in between a lesson with the boys when there's no time to do anything else: little 5 or 10 minute increments.

Edited by Garga
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The only reason I'm not bored is that I read a lot of books and watch a lot of tv. I feel bored when I'm cooking, I feel bored when I'm showering, I feel bored when I'm cleaning, I feel bored when I'm driving, I feel bored when I'm planning some school stuff (not all of it--some of it is complex enough that I'm fully engaged.)

 

So, I watch a lot of tv while I'm getting ready for the day or eating a meal or cooking or washing dishes. I listen to talk radio or songs I can sing along to while driving. I think most things that I have to do in life are pretty boring.

 

In the evening that's what I usually do.  Watch TV.  But I'm SO SICK OF TV.  TV is on right now, but I just can't get into it. 

 

Doesn't help that it has been very dark for days now.  Makes me feel like the days are one continuous night. 

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I totally get it. I wrote a very long post about feeling bored and purposeless in March:

http://forums.welltrainedmind.com/topic/588827-bored-intellectual-challenge-so-sahm/

 

and am just going to quote so I don't have to type it out again:

 


"I am bored. There, I said it.

 

I work; I teach physics at a four year STEM university.  I homeschool a high school junior who is very independent and does not need me most of the time. My oldest is away at college.

I can "find something to do":

I work on my self education. I consume copious amounts of Great Courses lectures while driving with DH. I read, am in a Great Books club run by the English Department, work on my French (not as much as I should). I am on the board of a local non-profit, am part of a women's circle, sing in choir, do Zumba every week at the women's community center. I hike every weekend and do nature photography, have created and maintain a website for hiking in our state, run a facebook page that goes with the website. I run my household, cook from scratch every day, house is company ready pretty much any time. I throw dinners and parties. I spend way too much time on this board and know more about homeschool curriculum than I will need to know for the rest of my homeschooling career. I am wasting time online, sigh.

So, "stuff to do" (but still not enough people interaction to satisfy my extrovert needs), and it does not bring me real satisfaction. I love my job, love the interaction with the students - but I would like to do something where I can stretch myself intellectually and give myself a genuine challenge, so that I can have a sense of accomplishment.

 

I am pretty sure the issue causing my boredom is the lack of a sense of accomplishment. I find myself less bored if I am working towards a goal. 

I found some relief by focusing on writing and photography and setting a tangible goal. I displayed my work in public at an event recently, and that felt very good. Still a long way to go to get a sense of purpose all the time.

Edited by regentrude
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And the crazy thing is I feel like it was kind of a slow day.  School is off.  DH is home.  Everyone is just kinda lounging around.

 

That is crazy! Clearly you are a master at Getting Things Done. I don't know...just enjoy relaxing? Take a long bath? Take a nap?

 

ETA: I also like regentrude's suggestion about working towards a goal.

Edited by MercyA
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I am working towards a goal and it does help.

 

But...I'm still bored. 

 

But then there sort of is this lack of "nothing going on out there".  Thing is, I have no clue what exactly that is.  I don't know what I want to do "out there".  I'm not particularly social.  So no I don't really want to go out and meet people.  I'm content with the number of people in my life. 

 

I don't actually have a shortage of things to do. But yet, I feel bored. 

 

I'm so bored that I thought eating sounded like something to do.  At least at the moment  it's only raw broccoli.

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I feel bored a lot when I don't have any mind food. I'm sort of addicted to study, because without it, my brain mopes. 

 

 

This is mostly what I do when I don't have other responsibilities.  But then there comes a point where my head might explode.  I can't focus anymore.  So then I'll work on some puzzly type stuff and that's good...but....I've done so many of them I am bored with them.

 

I think my current hobby has become complaining.  :closedeyes:

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The only time I ever feel bored is if I'm stuck in the car on a long drive.  Otherwise, never.  I actually have the opposite problem of always wishing there were more hours in the day so I could squeeze in all the things I want to do.  

 

Maybe you need to think up some new hobbies?  I have several pastimes that I absolutely love and that are challenging and time-consuming.  That really seems to keep boredom at bay.

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My sister and I, and my mom, when we go home for holidays, seem to need some project. Maybe we clean out my dads closet that hasn't seen the light of day since 1970, or we pull up the frost dead plants and put down some mulch, we pull weeds, we reorganize a closet, we cook something. I don't know, we seem to all need projects. My mom cooks at a soup kitchen, gardens, plays organ at church, volunteers, etc. sister works. I homeschool, garden, cook, chase after baby. I was feeling bored in some ways till I had another baby, and was about to ramp up the activity level in other areas.

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Maybe you're just bored with your routine, even though it's a busy routine. You need some spice to get out of the monotony. How you do that is another matter. I usually have a baby, move, or take on some new livestock adventure. Guessing that's not what you have in mind though. ;)

 

LOL

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Sounds to me like you are a very BRIGHT, if not Genius-IQ level person. People like that are often easily bored.

And/or it may also be the weather. You did say it was dark and gloomy, has been for a few days, and that can definitely 

affect a person's energy level and cognitive abilities.

 

Another possibility, depending on your faith, could be that your boredom will only be solved by spending time in prayer with God.

As a devoted follower of Jesus myself, I find that sometimes when I think I'm bored, and unsuccessfully try to satiate it with other things,

then communing with God is what does it! 

 

HTH!

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My mind keeps me occupied in almost any setting. If I had both nothing to read and no one to talk with I might get bored if I was trapped too long.

 

I wonder if introverts are less often bored? In my family and friends the introverts don't seem to suffer often from boredom. The extroverts do. My extrovert pool is smaller than my introvert pool, though, and I'm thinking of the adults in my life.

 

ETA: I see the post above--I'm not genius. Maybe that's why I'm rarely bored!

 

 

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I do think it's worth noting that you can't identify anything that mentally and emotionally recharges you other than sleep. What inspires you?  Thrills you?  Excites you?  Energizes you?   If nothing in the recent past, what used to do those things for you? What do you imagine might do those things if you had the opportunity?

Also, when was your last physical?

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I am bored a lot. I am often busy and bored. I think it's because if left to my own devices I'd be following my own interests/ education and I easily get completely happily engrossed in those. I need the challenge of continually moving forward with those things. However the reality is that nearly all my waking hours I have to be doing other things which take up my time/attention but just aren't that interesting. My mind is still looking for more so I feel bored

 

Is there a hobby that you can level up in? I think challenge/learning something new is helpful if you feel like this.

Edited by lailasmum
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Sometimes a lack of appreciation manifests as boredom.

 

Why bother to cook dinner if no one cares if you don't? Might as well go watch a Bollywood movie.

 

You could watch a Bollywood movie. Shah Rukh Khan is rather attractive and the movies are so long you'll have forgotten you are bored by the time they finish.  :laugh:

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I am never board. I have a long running imaginary story in my head, It is many chapters . When I get sick of it I start another one. The imaginary story is so real and vivid to me sometimes it is better than reality

 

 

Also I have one of those brains that if it not kept busy after a few minutes it goes on stand-bye mode (I fall asleep). ( ds22 just told me it is called logged out)

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In the evening that's what I usually do. Watch TV. But I'm SO SICK OF TV. TV is on right now, but I just can't get into it.

 

Doesn't help that it has been very dark for days now. Makes me feel like the days are one continuous night.

Are you sure you aren't actually depressed?

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I can easily get bored if I get too much in a routine.  That's why a part time job with variable hours works best for me.  When I start getting bored at home, I go to school (and my job there varies daily - hourly - all teaching - but totally different things).  When I get bored at school, I stay home.

 

When both of those things are boring to me (same old, same old), then I figure out our next travel destination.  Well, that's how I used to do it anyway... now I know I'll get bored, so I keep travel destinations always in the planning process.  Usually (almost always) those involve the Great Outdoors somewhere as that refreshes my brain far more than cities and "typical" city activities, but it can also be visiting relatives or whatever suits the time.

 

Then... since we've reached mid-life crisis stage (both hubby and I) and are getting more tired of this country overall, we're planning a major change/move (out of country) in a year and a half or a little more (after youngest finishes college and more money frees up for us).  Planning on that will relieve any boredom I might have as long as I have access to a computer for more research.  It means a couple of other trips are cut back (to save money), but having that focus is rather energizing in itself.  

 

I think the mid-life crisis part can be typical for many of us, so rather than sit and be frustrated with it, hubby and I brainstormed (for a while) about what we wanted to do when we grew up - and are in the planning stages part of doing it rather than having it be some sort of dreamy "never happens" bit as I see with many of our older or similar aged peers.

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UGH. I tried to quote my post from the last time we discussed this and accidentally posted there.

 

I was bored as a SAHM. It just isn't my thing.

 

I am now back to work full time and not bored. And I feel like I am making a drop of difference in the world, which I need.

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I would also say I'm a person who dislikes routine. I used to have a job with constant change and a bit of unpredictability built into it which suited me well. The day to day endless routine of life with kids also contributes to boredom. I like things being open and changeable.

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I find the people around me want to give me menial tasks to do, so I avoid them and am working on updating my skills with an eye towards self employment, as my diagnosis plus age makes me unlikely to be hired as more than a short term contractor. I have gone thru the expand my cooking phase, garden as much as I can, and am working out the decision on how to heat and cool the house. The community is holding on to its purse strings, and wont invest in anything, so there is nothing there to be on a board etc as they are all in a holding pattern. So, my wild suggestion for you is to find a self employment option like travel agent that will get you some variety, until you level up your education to do something you really like.

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I feel like this can relate to a sense of purpose.  Not really a goal, like, "learn to play violin".  But the answer to the question - why am I doing this?  Just passing the time sometimes isn't enough.

 

yes...this exactly

 

I often wonder what the point is.  There is satisfying some bucket list item and then there is just wondering what on earth I'm doing any of this for.

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I find the people around me want to give me menial tasks to do, so I avoid them and am working on updating my skills with an eye towards self employment, as my diagnosis plus age makes me unlikely to be hired as more than a short term contractor. I have gone thru the expand my cooking phase, garden as much as I can, and am working out the decision on how to heat and cool the house. The community is holding on to its purse strings, and wont invest in anything, so there is nothing there to be on a board etc as they are all in a holding pattern. So, my wild suggestion for you is to find a self employment option like travel agent that will get you some variety, until you level up your education to do something you really like.

 

Ugh yeah. Except for my hobbies, most of what I do is pretty menial.  And when my dad visits (currently) I feel extra annoyed at having to wait on another person (who is perfectly capable of doing things, but magically can't figure them out when he visits).  Grrrr..

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UGH. I tried to quote my post from the last time we discussed this and accidentally posted there.

 

I was bored as a SAHM. It just isn't my thing.

 

I am now back to work full time and not bored. And I feel like I am making a drop of difference in the world, which I need.

 

Well, at this point what I do during the day is pretty much set in stone.  I'm not unhappy with that stuff for the most part.  It IS something to do.  I'm just not currently doing it (vacation).  I prefer my routine I guess.

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Maybe you're just bored with your routine, even though it's a busy routine. You need some spice to get out of the monotony. How you do that is another matter. I usually have a baby, move, or take on some new livestock adventure. Guessing that's not what you have in mind though. ;)

 

LMAO

 

Yeah for years when my kids were little it was one thing right after another.  We moved geesh 6 times in a short period of time.  We renovated our house.  All this while the kids were little and I was homeschooling.  I had zero time to even think about this stuff.  Now my kids don't need me as much.  We have lived in the same place for awhile and except for cleaning it there isn't much to it. 

 

I spent a lot of time carting my kids to their activities and waiting.  I always bring something to do and I don't mind it so much, but it's basically there I am waiting...waiting....  I get so sick of driving to these places.  And listening to people drone on about the same crap.  Monotonous.

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Long story, short: Someone gave me a free mani/pedi two weeks ago. I've had them (super rarely) before, but it surprised me how happy it makes me to look at my hands and toes. (I know, it sounds stupid.)

 

The same thing happens when I take my car to be detailed -- I get the cheap package so it's not super detailed, just a little.

 

The really big thing that has saved me was finding a passion that I could do and still be home with the kids. It challenges me, makes me nervous at times (which is good) and is just a lot of fun-work. Plus gives me a little money.

 

If I weren't so full w/ this tiny job that I love, I'd: sign up for Toastmasters (seriously considering doing this anyway), take an acting class (way out of my comfort zone), take vocal instruction (again way out of the comfort zone), take more advanced training sessions w/ my dog etc. I've even thought about going back to school for an MFA which is a major "probably not," but I think about it. I'd also like to do braces on my lower teeth. (No, we're not rich. All of this would have to be carefully layered into the budget.)

 

Otherwise I agree w/ Garga: I read a lot. I love reading memoirs -- right now I'm glued to Hillbilly Elegy which I totally recommend. Before I read Girls with the Lower Back Tatoo. (I read liberal, conservative, doesn't matter to me.) The memoir that Anderson Cooper wrote w/ his mom was good too.

 

And if you want to LAUGH: read Lisa Scottoline's seven non-fiction books. Super funny. One is: My Third Husband Will Be a Dog.

 

All that said, I also struggle w/ the boredom thing: I don't think you're alone at all. But all of the above helps.

 

Alley :grouphug:

 

 

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Long story, short: Someone gave me a free mani/pedi two weeks ago. I've had them (super rarely) before, but it surprised me how happy it makes me to look at my hands and toes. (I know, it sounds stupid.)

 

The same thing happens when I take my car to be detailed -- I get the cheap package so it's not super detailed, just a little.

 

The really big thing that has saved me was finding a passion that I could do and still be home with the kids. It challenges me, makes me nervous at times (which is good) and is just a lot of fun-work. Plus gives me a little money.

 

If I weren't so full w/ this tiny job that I love, I'd: sign up for Toastmasters (seriously considering doing this anyway), take an acting class (way out of my comfort zone), take vocal instruction (again way out of the comfort zone), take more advanced training sessions w/ my dog etc. I've even thought about going back to school for an MFA which is a major "probably not," but I think about it. I'd also like to do braces on my lower teeth. (No, we're not rich. All of this would have to be carefully layered into the budget.)

 

Otherwise I agree w/ Garga: I read a lot. I love reading memoirs -- right now I'm glued to Hillbilly Elegy which I totally recommend. Before I read Girls with the Lower Back Tatoo. (I read liberal, conservative, doesn't matter to me.) The memoir that Anderson Cooper wrote w/ his mom was good too.

 

And if you want to LAUGH: read Lisa Scottoline's seven non-fiction books. Super funny. One is: My Third Husband Will Be a Dog.

 

All that said, I also struggle w/ the boredom thing: I don't think you're alone at all. But all of the above helps.

 

Alley :grouphug:

 

It definitely helped to sign up for the class.  I like going there.  It gives me something to do.  Although I think I chose something that was probably too easy (I lack confidence I guess).  I have signed up for another class and there is no way this is going to be too easy.  LOL  So I'm looking forward to that.

 

I feel like I'm doing everything right.  Doing everything people say I should do to remedy this feeling, but I dunno, I still feel very bored sometimes. 

 

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For me, having an overriding purpose that feels interesting or important makes the difference.  So cleaning out my cupboards for the sake of being busy is something that would be very, very boring for me.  But I can clean out my cupboards knowing I'm making room for one of my adult kids moving home for a few months, and then it's fine.  Otherwise, there is a good chance I will never, ever even clean those cupboards!  Or cleaning my attic just because it really needs it means it may not get done anytime soon because that sounds so boring.  But cleaning it knowing we'll be putting the house on the market in a year and I want to organize all the children's items up there before then suddenly makes it just fine.

 

But bigger things too.  Taking a class just for the sake of doing something interesting (but with no real purpose) doesn't sound too fun.  But taking that same class because of a bigger purpose (how it might relate to a job, a trip, helping a family member, etc.) makes it much more interesting.

 

I always felt a bigger purpose raising our children and homeschooling them, so that made a lot of menial tasks feel not boring at all!

 

Presently, it probably looks like I'm doing a lot of little menial boring things, but I'm actually helping a couple of my adult children make their way through some pretty challenging stuff, and so as I do my menial stuff I'm brainstorming in my mind all the things I need to do or they need to do in order to work through that stuff, and plotting it out.  So I'm not bored.

 

In sum, I do envy people who can just do things simply because those things need to be done and don't need some higher purpose to motivate them, or can take an interesting class just because it sounds interesting but doesn't necessarily lead to anything at all.  Because I think the bottom line for me is that I am just lazy, and I need that bigger purpose to motivate me and take away the boredom.

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For me, having an overriding purpose that feels interesting or important makes the difference.  So cleaning out my cupboards for the sake of being busy is something that would be very, very boring for me.  But I can clean out my cupboards knowing I'm making room for one of my adult kids moving home for a few months, and then it's fine.  Otherwise, there is a good chance I will never, ever even clean those cupboards!  Or cleaning my attic just because it really needs it means it may not get done anytime soon because that sounds so boring.  But cleaning it knowing we'll be putting the house on the market in a year and I want to organize all the children's items up there before then suddenly makes it just fine.

 

But bigger things too.  Taking a class just for the sake of doing something interesting (but with no real purpose) doesn't sound too fun.  But taking that same class because of a bigger purpose (how it might relate to a job, a trip, helping a family member, etc.) makes it much more interesting.

 

I always felt a bigger purpose raising our children and homeschooling them, so that made a lot of menial tasks feel not boring at all!

 

Presently, it probably looks like I'm doing a lot of little menial boring things, but I'm actually helping a couple of my adult children make their way through some pretty challenging stuff, and so as I do my menial stuff I'm brainstorming in my mind all the things I need to do or they need to do in order to work through that stuff, and plotting it out.  So I'm not bored.

 

In sum, I do envy people who can just do things simply because those things need to be done and don't need some higher purpose to motivate them, or can take an interesting class just because it sounds interesting but doesn't necessarily lead to anything at all.  Because I think the bottom line for me is that I am just lazy, and I need that bigger purpose to motivate me and take away the boredom.

 

Oh yeah if I want to do any deep cleaning in my house...inviting someone over is about the only thing that lights any fire under that interest.  LOL! 

 

 

 

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yes...this exactly

 

I often wonder what the point is.  There is satisfying some bucket list item and then there is just wondering what on earth I'm doing any of this for.

 

That's really an introspection/meanning of life issue.  I think it's a pretty common aspect of the mid-life rethink, there is a desire or need to do something more meaninful or that has a greater purpose than just fulfilling duties or being entertainment.

 

If you think about what you really think is important in the greater sense, maybe it will give some indication of something you could do that is more satisfying, or satisfies in a different way.  Or, if you don't haved a sense of what is really important, those meaning of life questions, maybe now is the time to think about it.

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Menial things at my home arent an issue, as cleaning is necessary to health and safety. I can listen to podcasts, make plans, evaluate decisions etc while doing those chores. What I am objecting to is relatives who try to dump....no, I dont want to take your mother/child to the doctors office, the train station etc wait while they are in surgery, clean your house, cater your party, or make your meals - take some PTO or put down your alcohol if you need the time. These are menial to me, but they shouldnt be to the responsible person.

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That's really an introspection/meanning of life issue.  I think it's a pretty common aspect of the mid-life rethink, there is a desire or need to do something more meaninful or that has a greater purpose than just fulfilling duties or being entertainment.

 

If you think about what you really think is important in the greater sense, maybe it will give some indication of something you could do that is more satisfying, or satisfies in a different way.  Or, if you don't haved a sense of what is really important, those meaning of life questions, maybe now is the time to think about it.

 

I have similar goals in my mind as I did when I was 20, but at this point I assume it's too late.  That's not a pleasant feeling.  Maybe not too late exactly, but completely impractical.  Yet, I can't really figure something out that is both practical and satisfies my desires (or whatever anyone wants to call it).

 

I don't want to just go out and get some dumb job.  I don't need the money and I am so done with menial stupid stupid jobs.  I've been doing menial stupid stupid jobs since I was 12.  I'm done.  I know that would not make me happy at all.  It's the one thing that has been the most disappointing aspect of my life.  And yeah..blah blah...I should be thankful...blah blah...do I think I"m some sort of special snowflake because that's not good enough for me....blah.  Yes, I do want more than that. 

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I have similar goals in my mind as I did when I was 20, but at this point I assume it's too late.  That's not a pleasant feeling.  Maybe not too late exactly, but completely impractical.  Yet, I can't really figure something out that is both practical and satisfies my desires (or whatever anyone wants to call it).

 

I don't want to just go out and get some dumb job.  I don't need the money and I am so done with menial stupid stupid jobs.  I've been doing menial stupid stupid jobs since I was 12.  I'm done.  I know that would not make me happy at all.  It's the one thing that has been the most disappointing aspect of my life.  And yeah..blah blah...I should be thankful...blah blah...do I think I"m some sort of special snowflake because that's not good enough for me....blah.  Yes, I do want more than that. 

 

Do you mind saying what kind of thing you wanted to do, or what kinds of things you think are important for a good life.

 

For example, for me i think of this in terms of calling - bth my gifts that are to be given to the greater good, but also a real aspect of just doing the job that needs to be done.  So, service work is important to me.  Ideally something I can do well. There are lots of options there, from administrative work to sitting on community boards to packing bags at the food bank.  My sister was recently looking for someone to apply for the health board, and had I not had a new baby I would have considered it.

 

 I also think community life is an integral part of a good human life, and so community work is something I think is meaningful, and there are lots of things I could do along those lines, from gardening for the community museum nearby to singing in a community choir, organizing a litter pick-up, and so on.

 

Even fairly mundane things can be satisfying when they take me towards values that I think are important.

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I have similar goals in my mind as I did when I was 20, but at this point I assume it's too late.  That's not a pleasant feeling.  Maybe not too late exactly, but completely impractical.  Yet, I can't really figure something out that is both practical and satisfies my desires (or whatever anyone wants to call it).

 

I hear you. I think it is part of the midlife situation that we realize that some things won't be possible anymore - as much as anybody tells us we can still do anything we want, that's a load of BS. Some windows have closed, and yes, that is an unpleasant realization. And for some things the cost and effort to make  them happen is more than we want to incur (and yes, I realize, this is partly a choice - but also partly the reality of having other responsibilities as well.)

So there is one childhood dream I will never fulfill. Period. Just dabbling as an amateur in what one would have wanted as a career does not bring the same fulfillment.

OTOH, I have discovered that something I always wanted to do, since childhood, is still possible, and at this point in my life I have more time available to pursue this than I ever had before. I found that getting very serious about it helped me develop a new sense of purpose, and it is really exciting.

 

If you don't mind sharing: what would your goals be?

(FWIW: my now impossible dream was to be a professional opera singer. My still fulfillable passion is to write poetry.)

Edited by regentrude
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Do you mind saying what kind of thing you wanted to do, or what kinds of things you think are important for a good life.

 

For example, for me i think of this in terms of calling - bth my gifts that are to be given to the greater good, but also a real aspect of just doing the job that needs to be done.  So, service work is important to me.  Ideally something I can do well. There are lots of options there, from administrative work to sitting on community boards to packing bags at the food bank.  My sister was recently looking for someone to apply for the health board, and had I not had a new baby I would have considered it.

 

 I also think community life is an integral part of a good human life, and so community work is something I think is meaningful, and there are lots of things I could do along those lines, from gardening for the community museum nearby to singing in a community choir, organizing a litter pick-up, and so on.

 

Even fairly mundane things can be satisfying when they take me towards values that I think are important.

 

Nah.  I've also done a lot of volunteer work in my life.  Along side those getting paid well to do the same thing.  NO THANKS.  I don't feel satisfied by that.  I felt taken advantage of.  Although one thing I did enjoy doing was talking to older people.  I had one volunteer gig where I would just go and visit older people in a nursing home and they'd tell me their stories. I know they enjoyed it and I enjoyed it. 

 

I wanted to work in social science research.  Or some other similar intellectual pursuit. This is an incredibly difficult thing to get into and pretty much impossible for someone who can't up and move a lot. 

 

But my limitations are also that I'm not a people person.  I wouldn't be good in any kind of leadership role.  I work fine with people one on one, but that's it.  Ideally whatever it is I do really does not involve working directly with a ton of people.  (Not a shyness, not even a weirdness IMO, it's just something I heavily prefer.) 

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I understand. I don't call it boredom, though. I have hobbies, too, but I am never able to indulge because I have young children (and even older children) who constantly interrupt me. I have books I want to finish, but unless I'm in the middle of some mindless romance book (which I rarely read), I can't read, because by the time I get my mind into something someone is asking me a question or fighting or I have to take someone to piano lessons or volleball practice or get on them because they haven't finished schoolwork. So, when I have a few minutes .... I feel completely at loose ends and end up just surfing the Net or something because that's all I can manage. I hate living this way. It's a tremendous waste of time. But I don't know what the answer is.

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Nah.  I've also done a lot of volunteer work in my life.  Along side those getting paid well to do the same thing.  NO THANKS.  I don't feel satisfied by that.  I felt taken advantage of.  Although one thing I did enjoy doing was talking to older people.  I had one volunteer gig where I would just go and visit older people in a nursing home and they'd tell me their stories. I know they enjoyed it and I enjoyed it. 

 

I wanted to work in social science research.  Or some other similar intellectual pursuit. This is an incredibly difficult thing to get into and pretty much impossible for someone who can't up and move a lot. 

 

But my limitations are also that I'm not a people person.  I wouldn't be good in any kind of leadership role.  I work fine with people one on one, but that's it.  Ideally whatever it is I do really does not involve working directly with a ton of people.  (Not a shyness, not even a weirdness IMO, it's just something I heavily prefer.) 

 

I think you need to be much more specific than "I will volunteer and that will make it meaningful."  It needs to be something that in itself is somehow important. 

 

As far as meaning and what is really important, I was not thinking so much in terms of goals in early adulthood, or childhood dreams, though they can be revealing.  More - what, if any, is the greater purpose of life?  What makes us truly human, how does one become most truly human?  What makes for a good life? 

 

Totally off the top of my head here, but you might consider something like recording the stories of older people in your community, and organizing them somehow.  Maybe a particular type of person or experience.  Kind of a Studs Terkel sort of thing.  (As an aside, I have a project in mind I would love to have time to get underway, my grandfather was a writer and journalist, and I'd love to collect together all his writing, or at least his professional stuff.  It would mean wading through a lot of archives as some of the papers he wrote for went under before I was born.)

 

I have the same issue with people - I do well one on one but I do not want to be regularly in a leadership role or especially working where I have to meet new people a lot and interact with them.  It takes a lot more energy for me to do that kind of job.  I can manage some small group leadership if its a stable group and I like working with a few other people, especially creatively.

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I think you need to be much more specific than "I will volunteer and that will make it meaningful."  It needs to be something that in itself is somehow important. 

 

As far as meaning and what is really important, I was not thinking so much in terms of goals in early adulthood, or childhood dreams, though they can be revealing.  More - what, if any, is the greater purpose of life?  What makes us truly human, how does one become most truly human?  What makes for a good life? 

 

Totally off the top of my head here, but you might consider something like recording the stories of older people in your community, and organizing them somehow.  Maybe a particular type of person or experience.  Kind of a Studs Terkel sort of thing.  (As an aside, I have a project in mind I would love to have time to get underway, my grandfather was a writer and journalist, and I'd love to collect together all his writing, or at least his professional stuff.  It would mean wading through a lot of archives as some of the papers he wrote for went under before I was born.)

 

I have the same issue with people - I do well one on one but I do not want to be regularly in a leadership role or especially working where I have to meet new people a lot and interact with them.  It takes a lot more energy for me to do that kind of job.  I can manage some small group leadership if its a stable group and I like working with a few other people, especially creatively.

 

Honestly. I want to be paid for my efforts.  I don't need the money in the sense my needs/wants are low, but not in the sense that I have extra money to spend to go work for someone for free. 

 

But you know I love that idea about recording stories.  One project I did for a class years ago was to interview an older person and write about it.  I really enjoyed that. 

 

I admit though I feel no sense of connection to my community.  I did not grow up here.  I'm not particularly proud of the place.  I feel as if the majority of people here are very apathetic (at best). 

 

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