How to Make the Most of a Season that Seems Boring
Is anyone else if a tough stage of life where you just feel like nothing is happening? Like whenever someone asks you “What’s new?” you really struggle to come up with anything new to tell them.
I’m right there with you. I’ve been in the same job for a couple years. I finished grad school, so I don’t have that to tell people about anymore. I’ve lived in the same apartment for a couple of years and I haven’t been in a serious relationship in almost a year. Things are just the same. Not that it’s all bad, things are steady, things are predictable, but they’re also boring.
What a dreaded word. Society makes boring seem like the worst possible thing your life could be. We don’t want our clothes, makeup, hair or relationships to be boring. We constantly feel pressured to be pushing ourselves and doing things that are new and interesting.
I fell into this way of thinking. I let society make me feel like since my life was steady, it was boring. I began to feel like I needed a new job, apartment or boyfriend, just something to mix things up and break the monotony. I don’t think that this is how God wants us to view the times in our lives where nothing exciting seems to be happening.
Don’t get me wrong, there are definitely times that we need to trust God and let him push us out of our comfort zones and into a new place in our lives, but we also need to appreciate the times or sameness, steadiness and boredom.
I think one example of this is the Olympics. I know this seems off the wall, but stick with me and I think it will make sense!
So, I am one of those people who are obsessed with the Olympics, like maybe to an unhealthy level. I work night shift so I have legitimately called off work for the night so that I could watch gymnastics. Hope my boss doesn’t see this!
One of the worst things about working night shift is not being home to watch prime time TV (I am one of those weirdos without cable, so I can’t just use DVR and watch stuff later)! Well, that and never getting a full night sleep. But seriously, I can’t tell you how many season finales and bachelor proposals have been spoiled for me because I saw it online before I could watch the episode! I didn’t want the Olympic gymnastics results to get spoiled for me so clearly I had no option but to skip work!
Anyway, back to the Olympics. For some reason I love to sit on the couch, eat snacks and critique the world class athletes, commenting on ways they could improve, while I inhale a bowl of ice cream.
Side note- the Olympics used to be super inspiring to me when I was in middle school as I watched all the athletes and saw what they could achieve. Now that I’m older than most of them, and in the case of the Chinese gymnasts, almost old enough to be their mother, it’s kind of depressing.
One thing that comes up a lot is the training routines of the Olympians. These athletes are dedicated. They train day in and day out. They get up at the same time, do the same workouts and eat the same foods day after day after day.
I used to be obsessed with Tara Lipinski. I read a lot about her career and her training. She won her Olympic gold medal when she was only 15 years old. She didn’t go to high school; instead she trained 8 hours a day. She skated, lifted weights and did ballet to perfect her skills. She wasn’t doing different routines everyday trying to decide what was best; she was doing the same thing day after day so that she could make it great.
The sameness and monotony is what allows athletes to grow and develop. A swimmer doesn’t run on Monday, golf on Tuesday, box on Wednesday, ski on Thursday and swim on Friday. They swim every day. They don’t change up their routine to make sure it’s not boring; they do the same thing every day so they can improve.
The announcers always make a big deal if there has been a change of any kind leading up to games. I’ve heard them say an athlete switched coaches 18 months ago and then comment on how disruptive that is to their training. If a gymnast or ice skater makes any type of a last minute change to their program people freak out. Changes of any type disrupt the training and hinder the athlete’s chances to excel.
We’ve all heard the saying “practice makes perfect.” Practice is essentially monotony. You do the same thing day after day after day.
I think when we have seasons of sameness or boredom in our lives, God is trying to grow us and teach us.
Granted, you grow a lot when you first start a new job, but when things finally settle down you can really start to perfect your craft. If you were to switch jobs every year, you would spend half your time in orientation and never excel at anything. Consistency gives us the chance to really improve and grow.
Don’t wish away seasons in life where nothing seems to be changing. Use the time to grow closer to God, to become more consistent in your devotions, to improve your relationships, to encourage your co-workers and to really love on your family.
If we let him, God will use these “boring” seasons to change us and make us the women that he wants us to be.
Philippians 4:11 says, “I have learned to be content in whatever circumstances I am in.” I hope that this will be true of us! God is always working, if we are faithful and allow him in. If you are constantly running and striving to prevent your life from becoming boring, you will miss out on so many opportunities for growth.
Growth and maturity happen with practice, with sameness and sometimes with boredom. If we rush the less exciting seasons of life, we are depriving ourselves of opportunities to learn and grow.
Next time someone asks you what’s new; don’t be afraid to tell them nothing.