E#20: How to Overcome Boredom in Life
This episode is why we lose our sense of vitality and how creativity helps overcome boredom.
Today's quick win podcast episode is one that I think will resonate with people who are in the medical field, where you do meaningful work but can feel that what you are doing is meaningless because, at times, it gets so predictable, monotonous, repetitive and frankly sometimes boring no matter how much you help people. Have you ever felt that way? Have you ever asked the question, "Is this what I'm going to keep doing day in and day out?" Sometimes we can feel humdrum or kind of 'blah,' in other words, not excited or charged up. Let me explain by telling you how I even decided to talk about this in this podcast episode.
He said he doesn't really feel fully charged or excited, the way he did when he was younger and in university.
I was recently talking to a good friend of mine, who I've known for over 30 years, and he's in the medical field. But part of him feels stuck and frankly bored with his day to day routine.
He's great at what he does as a doctor, he's a great dad, and I'm guessing a good husband too. He's very active in the medical community, but he called me recently and was wondering if this is all there is to his life? He said he doesn't really feel fully charged or excited, the way he did when he was younger and in university. And he wanted my thoughts, so I asked him one particular question. The question was focused on creativity because I never heard him talk about doing anything creative. In the past, when he was younger, he had a lot of creative ambitions and hobbies. In university, he was a journalist and did photography.
So I asked him, "do you have a hobby that you are actively doing? And there was a long pause. He said, "well, I bike a lot to keep fit, but then he said, "No not really I can't think of anything." And that's when I knew that was the one thing that was missing from his life that could instantly give him greater joy and vitality.
"do you have a hobby that you are actively doing? And there was a long pause."
And I discussed with him my belief, that if we don't have a creative outlet in our lives, we do not have vitality and energy. I believe that we are all creative human beings and we need an outlet to express that creativity. Whether it's doing something such as woodworking, drawing, building something from crafts, knitting, sculpting, or writing.
And it doesn't have to be, award-winning stuff or published. You don't have to sell it. Creativity for the sake of creativity that satisfies you. You are the only audience that you need. Doing creativity for the pure self joy that it gives you - is reason enough. Art is human emotion expressed in a physical form, such as written work, sculptures, paintings, drawings, music, food, sports and physical movement etc.
Most of us in the world of medicine do so many things that frankly does not require a lot of creativity. It's very logical, left-brain type of thinking. The things we do are very routine, very predictable. And frankly, we can feel like it's Groundhog Day, where every single day doesn't differ much at all. And I think that's when we feel not enthused and alive. So many occupations have a lack of creativity in it.
I believe that we are all creative human beings and we need an outlet to express that creativity... it doesn't have to be, award-winning stuff or published. You don't have to sell it.
In medicine, we don't really have a creative outlet. Note, we may use creative solutions to solve problems in the clinical setting, but you can hardly say that that is highly creative. And in medicine, we are science-based, and it's the antithesis of creativity to some extent because in the world of medicine, we look and ask for evidence when we are diagnosing symptoms or trying to come up with treatment options etc. As an aside, some of the most exceptional solutions in science came from a creative angle or mindset. Look at the discovery of Insulin, the invention of the airplane and so many more examples that I could site.
If you look at people who are happier and enthused, they have some creative outlet.
So this podcast episode is all about reconnecting with your creative self. And I'll ask you one simple question- "are you feeling charged and energized with your day-to-day activities? Do you feel that the sense of vitality and wonder daily and consistently? If you're not, I'm willing to bet that you aren't actively engaged in something creative enough or using your right side of your brain.
If you look at people who are happier and enthused, they have some creative outlet. And if you are doing that, then that is awesome, and I applaud you for that.
And note, the most important thing is that you have it scheduled your creative time daily or weekly in your routine and life. If you don't schedule it, it won't get done.
Now, you don't have to do tons of it every day, and you may even do it to four times a week, but when you do those activities and schedule it, it will make you feel enthusiastic and alive.
"Lalit, I'm not creative, or I don't know what to do."
Now you may be saying, "Lalit, I'm not creative, or I don't know what to do." Well, the question and solution I have for you is:
"think about something that interests you or something that you always wanted to learn. Whether it's music, as a side bar I took drum lessons for about 6 months because it was something I wanted to do, but then decided I was too busy with other creative endeavors that I didn't stick with it. I made it my goal to do one-30 min lesson a week and then practice for 10 min a day. It was great fun and something I looked forward too.
I digress, but pick an area, writing a book, novel, quilting, sewing, art, drawing, sculpting, acting, painting, woodworking or a craft. Try it out and see if you like it. Write a poem, a story. If this catches your interest and you want to carry on, then that's fantastic and you should pursue it. Pursue it with a friend as well if you think that will add to your growth and vitality.
When we are creating something, we are filling our fundamental need to grow, one of our core basic human needs to thrive. Note, you can Go online to Youtube to search areas of creating or learning a new skill that you might enjoy.
So think about what's creative in your life. Are you feeling charged and excited daily and consistently or are you also asking the question "is this all there is in my life?"
I'd love to hear what you do that's creative, and please send me an email at firstname.lastname@example.org.
I know some so many physicians do something creative take a look at Dr. Melissa Yuans-Innes who has written so many great novels; I'm reading one of them right now.
Remember, we are human beings that require creativity as an essential element in our lives.
"I hope this podcast served you in some way, if you've enjoyed listening to this podcast, please share with a friend or colleague and subscribe to us Apple podcast, Spotify or your favourite podcast app. And please don't forget to leave a rating, I know it seems like a small thing, but it makes a difference in terms of helping others find this podcast. I'm Dr. Lalit Chawla and thank you so much for listening. Let's together make a greater, more effective community and inspire people to live with Greater Harmony, Joy and Magic in their lives.
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Have a super day!