What to Do When You Don’t Know What to Do

It’s very unsettling that the human mind can become bored with certain activities. But I can explain it to you in a layman’s terms. It has to do with gaining new information and over-exerting your synapses and nerves. Of course, there are plenty more reasons why boredom can happen at any given time — you’re low on cash, you’ve already gone to the mall three times this weekend, you’ve already eaten that left-over dinner item. So when you have eaten it all, slept it all, seen it all, and done it all — what do you do? I might have a few tips which can be of some assistance.

1. Learn A New Hobby

Any hobby can be a fun and entertaining way to keep yourself interested in something new. When I was going to college, I was making flutes out of clay. I had never done it before, but I managed to sell a few and earn a little extra cash on the side. I’ve since learned something about collecting coins, collecting Zippo lighters, reading lots of books. If you happen to be interested in the history of something, you will almost undoubtedly learn other affiliated pieces of information. As an example, I have a few coins made the same year my grandmother was born, which was also six years before a local ice cream parlor had opened during the Great Depression — and is still open to this day!

2. Play An Instrument

I cannot really stress how excellent it would be to tote around a random instrument which you have taken the time to master on your own time, whip it out in public, and start improvising in the same exact key that someone may be singing or playing with another instrument. Busking in a city or near a beach would be an ideal setting to show off your accumulated playing talents. Seed money can start the process of earning tips, but it would help to know some contemporary music as opposed to Bach or Beethoven. (I’m not saying that they shouldn’t be in your repertoire, but I do believe that those eras of music which far surpass our own generation in terms of talent will help you to improvise in an expert manner). This way, you perhaps would be joined by a beat-boxer and an accordion player and make something of worthwhile value to take the normalcy away from a monotonous routine for others.

3. Learn A New Language

Wouldn’t it be so cool to be visiting your favorite vacation spot which doubled as a tourist trap, and be able to communicate with strangers from Norway or Germany? During what can be considered a substantial portion of human existence, the ability to communicate with others for bartering has been a very important notion. These days, however, monolingual folks such as myself are astounded at the difficulty of mastering a new language, but very much awe-inspired that another language can be spoken right in front of you and there is communication being made. Those are exceptionally amazing talents of the human mind. A computer has difficulty with such processes, and people who are multilingual in five or more languages seem to have the ability to switch at will. It would make for a nice conversation with a family from a foreign country about lifestyles and arts and music, but it would make for an even better time when you travel about knowing a little history and gaining perspectives from locals at the same time.

4. Learn to Cook a New Dish

I posted a recipe here not too long ago. It was not the first time I had ever made it, but I mentioned that people really liked and wanted more of it — that is the kind of satisfaction I wish to have when making new dishes. I’m not a chef by any stretch of the imagination, but learning recipes for multiple dinners is never a bad idea. Kids not eating spinach? Perhaps hiding it away with some soup or stew will give then that Popeye strength. Rice? It’s difficult for the beginner, but it’s an excellent addition to any chicken dinner. Learning how to make new dinners and lunches, in varying combinations, will guarantee that microwave won’t be your primary heating source. And think of the possibility of maintaining your own garden to grow your own food! That would be some savings, I tell you! Savings! And it will positively make for some nice full bellies, to boot.

5. Test Your Typing Skills

I’m not exactly what one would consider a typist by trade, but a few months ago, I tested my typing speed and I was clocked around 45-50 words per minute. This qualifies me to do any beginning data entry job with the exception of a stenographer. But it was a random test, to be sure. I didn’t have any idea what my typing speed was when I was job searching (I may be searching for a new job here soon, myself, being unhappy with my place of employment) but my surprise was pretty well acceptable. You can use this for any skill, and not just typing. Adding and subtracting quickly in your head, as well as multiplication and division, can both be highly useful for receiving the correct amount of change in any transaction. Also, by some stretch of the imagination, you never know when you’ll need to know the lyrics for an obscure song with your skill of rapid access to seemingly unnecessary information…

This isn’t exactly a comprehensive list of things to do when boredom happens to strike out of nowhere. But it does, in my opinion, certainly seem to be a far better list of items than simply sitting on the couch watching mind-numbing television shows or reruns, or playing the same games over and over again. Think of some new ideas and tasks which you suit your needs best! I should be clear about cleaning — that is a necessary evil. Fewer things in the household will result in fewer cleaning tasks. One may become bored with cleaning, but hey, I wouldn’t want non-human squatters in my house, either! Even if you’re not one to become bored so easily, it never hurts to have a hobby or three.

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