STOP!!! READ THIS, FIRST:
It’s not easy sharing personal things of this nature. You’re free to take my advice or leave it, but don’t be an ass-hole and send me a nasty message just because you don’t like what I am saying- because I am not talking about you. I am talking about me. I’m sharing this information on the off chance it resonates with you. If not, that’s O.K.
If you’re clinically depressed or have Asperger’s, this is not an article for you. Please seek professional help and stop reading.
Ok, you may continue reading, or Not. The choice is yours.
Life without adventure would be deadly dull.”
Sir Robert Baden-Powell, founder and first Chief Scout of the worldwide Boy Scout
What makes one person boring and another person NOT boring?
You’re not supposed to care what other people think, but let’s face it…Some of us (myself included) do care. You don’t want to bore the hell out of other people or have a life so uninteresting that even YOU find your own life annoyingly dull.
The problem is you have no idea how to be less boring.
So what’s the answer?
Now before you start reading, let me first clarify that I AM NOT AN EXPERT on the subject matter of being charismatic and truth be told, I AM NOT THE MOST EXCITING PERSON IN THE WORLD nor will I ever be.
I do, however, want to be more vibrant in social situations. Less of a wallflower if you will. Not so much because I care what others think of me, which I do but because I admire charismatic and lively people, I strive to evolve and improve myself continually, and this is one way in which I have chosen to do it.
Why Am I So Boring?- My story of feeling like a boring person
I have struggled with the insecure worry that other people find me boring and uninteresting since I was a child. Less so now, but my childhood worries definitely marked me for life.
I think worrying if I was DULL must have been what made me so damn shy. Shy to the point where It was debilitating. I would freeze or stay silent because I was so afraid of what other people might think of me. I would sit silently in social situations, not wanting to draw attention to me or make the wrong move.
Later on in life, as a teenager, it just became normal for me to shrink into the background or act awkward in social settings.
I looked on with envy at the other kids who, in my eyes, were like social honey attracting all the other kids with their sweet and fascinating personalities.
Yeah, I was that kid who ate lunch alone
I used to dread the lunch bell because I didn’t have a set of friends to eat lunch with regularly. My best friends were two neighbourhood girls who didn’t know me at school.
I am not saying I had no friends because I did. But they didn’t actively seek me out like they did the other kids. People seemed to forget about me if I wasn’t there. No one missed me. No one looked forward to seeing me. I was always aware of just how uninteresting I was, and it bothered me…
Change through trial and error:
It wasn’t until I was in my late teens and then a young adult when I tried to take matters into my own hands and took action. My goals were to learn to feel more secure about myself.
I didn’t have a psychologist and didn’t ask friends or have self-help books.
Shrivelling into the background has its perks. I was invisible, free to observe others and de-engineer the personalities of those whom I admired so that I could practice emulating them.
I realize now my plan was flawed because emulating others whom we think are interesting so that I could learn to be less boring can only take so far if anywhere at all.
Plus, I think the issue was more of a problem of insecurity, too scared to just be myself and live my life as genuinely happy.
Even today, as a grown woman married with children, I still feel insecure. The difference is, I have learned to recognize the signs of insecurity, and I know what I need to do to fight those annoying voices in my head that tell me I’m not good enough.
I’m shy, but no one believes me now
These days, I’m not the life of the part, but I must have done something right because people who know me today have a hard time believing I was and still am somewhat of a shy and insecure person. Or that I feel anxious and awkward in social settings or that I worry what others think of me- like if I am boring or not.
When you feel inadequate, it stops you from living life to the fullest.
Looking back, the thing I hated the most was that my shyness, my insecurities stopped me from doing the things I wanted to do. It was debilitating.
You might be interested in reading Dance Like No One Is Watching Instead Of Worrying What People Think
10 Signs You Are A Boring Person And How To Be A Less Boring Person?
But enough about me. I won’t bore you anymore with my story. No pun intended. Here are the top 10 things which I noticed about myself, which I think made me dull and how I overcame them. Are you guilty of any of these?
1-You Talk Non-Stop About Things That Only Interest You.
Sign: In the early years, I noticed that some of the people I admired most talked a lot, so I tried it. It wasn’t easy because I’m not a natural-born chatterbox.
What ended up happening was I droned on and on for the sake of talking and the conversations ended up being a one-sided conversation about nothing in particular, essentially boring the other person.
No one likes to be on a one-sided conversation, and nothing screams BOOOORING more than talking non stop about subjects that other people couldn’t care less about.
Solution: I’ve since learned there is an art to having a mutually beneficial and interesting conversation.
Unless you’re a magnificent storyteller, if you notice you’re doing all the talking and the other person has gone quiet, it’s might be a sign the other person is not interested or engaged. Try re-engaging that other person by asking him or her questions. Listen to them and genuinely be interested in what they have to say.
2- You’re A Total Downer
Sign: Let’s face it; no one wants to be a downer—someone who dampens the mood with their negative comments or negative view about life.
This was a tough habit to kick mainly because I didn’t see myself as a downer, and I was. I saw myself as a realist.
I would see the glass half empty and was way too serious for a kid of my age.
Then I met someone who was like me, and I could finally see myself more clearly through this other person. I was a downer.
Examples of depressing conversation killers
- “I wish I was smarter.”
- “Life is so hard.”
- “Why does everyone hate me”?
- “I have no friends.”
- whaa whaa whaa, oh woes me!!
Solution: Easier said than done, I know but stop focussing on the negative and try to see the positive. It’s an active exercise that will take extreme effort, but it can help lift your spirits. Trust me on this one.
What’s that old saying? If life gives you lemons, make lemonade?
3- You’re Really Uptight And Painfully Serious
Sign: Fun people like to laugh, tell jokes and let loose once in a while.
My definition of an uptight person is someone who is super RIGID and worried about PROTOCOL or doing things a certain way. They can’t take a joke and are hard to get along with and tend to complain a lot. God forbid if they ever let loose or do something that is out of character.
*I’m not talking about children or people with Aspergers or clinically depressed people. And by the way, my son has Aspergers. I’m talking about adults.
Solution: Let loose have some fun. Laugh at yourself once in a while. You’ll know you’re having fun when you laugh and don’t care who sees. If you know someone uptight and a buzz kill, then try to lead by example. Sometimes your upbeat and fun attitude can be contagious.
4-You Complain About Everything
Sign: This type of person sees fault in everything and is not afraid to let you know.
There is no joy or fun in being around someone like this because you feel like you have to walk on eggshells around them.
Here are some great examples of what a complainer might say.
- “The music is too loud” (it’s almost at the lowest setting)
- “what’s that horrible smell? “ It’s butter, garlic and shallots in a white wine sauce.
- “Stop walking on the grass; you’re crushing it” (It’s a picnic area)
- “You eat too much.”
- “you never eat” (the next day the same person said this to me)
Solution: I have no idea how to handle this type of venomous personality. In my experience, this person is out to make themselves look or feel good by seeing the bad in others or putting others down. I usually try to be very careful around this person, and I try reducing the amount of time I spend with them. If that is not possible, then find an outlet to recharge and reboot.
5-You Rarely Try New Things or Travel To New Places
Sign: Fun people tend to get out there in life and do things. They have the added benefit of having more experiences outside of work, which means they usually have more to talk about too.
But not everyone has the time or money or inclination to get out there and suck the marrow out of life.
I remember when I was very restricted in terms of time and money. I only had time to do the bare essentials like work, take care of my children, cook and clean. When I did have the time, I often did not have the money and could not afford to pay for a sitter. To say that it was hard for me to do and try new things is an understatement, and my situation only compounded issues for me. Looking back, I should have tried harder or made more time to do things outside of my routine. It might have made a difference.
Solution: Make time, even if only once in a blue moon, to do something out of the ordinary — anything, big or small.
- Tackle something on your bucket list (even if it’s as small as reading a book)
- Go to the museum or a local art gallery.
- Check out a new ethnic restaurant
- Go to the gym, start knitting, teach yourself to code.
- Travel to new places.
6- You Never Ever Smile
Sign: When I think about people who are fun in my life, I picture them smiling, laughing and just being jovial.
When I think of someone boring, I picture scowling faces and furrowed eyebrows.
Which one are you? All Smiles or all frowny?
Solution: Just smile. I learned a long time ago that the simple act of smiling can lift someone’s spirits.
Smiling is also contagious. I have smiled at scowly faced people on the street, and to my surprise, they suddenly smile back.
I once had someone stop to “thank me” for smiling at them. Try it, it works.
7- You’re Super Predictable and Never Spontaneous
I love seeing life through my children’s eyes because, like most kids, they are naturally curious and seek out new experiences.
It’s also fun to be around adults with these qualities.
If you’re stuck in a rut or dissatisfied about how things are going in your life, try being more spontaneous. It can help mix things up a bit.
Examples of some ways you can be predictable are…
- Everything you do has to be planned to the “T.”
- You always take the practical, safe route in life.
- You say NO more than you say YES
Solution: If you’re this type of predictable person, do more things you wouldn’t normally do.
Start right now. Go and find something new to do and do it. Say “YES” more. Stop planning everything. If you’re a planner like me, it’s hard, I know.
You might be interested in reading 101 Simple Adventures You Can Do Every day: Bust Out Of That Rut
8- You Work All The Time
Sign: When you make work your life’s purpose, you’re almost guaranteed to become a boring person. I used to be so hung up about climbing the corporate ladder it consumed me. Who wants to hang out with someone who enjoys working more than they like laughing and having fun. I’m all for working hard, but if that is all you do, your family and friends might disown you.
Solution: Spend more time outside of work. I’m not talking about vegging out in front of the T.V. like some tired, overworked couch potato. I’m talking about living your life to the fullest and doing all those things you’ve always wanted to do but haven’t yet. Don’t let work define who you are. Unless, of course, you’re lucky enough to have a job that is also your passion. I imagine artists and athletes might be in this category.
9-You have No Hobbies Or Passions
When you are passionate about a subject or a hobby, it becomes part of who you are. It can give you purpose and make you feel more fulfilled about your life. (I say can, because this is how I feel. You might feel differently.) Certain hobbies also have the added benefit of putting you in contact with other people who share the same passion as you- sailing, golfing, knitting club, mine-craft group, cooking and even board games.
Solution: Get a hobby, then get out there and meet other people who enjoy that same hobby. There are lots of clubs for various hobbies you can join. Just look online or in your local paper.
10-You’re A boring Hermit
I think a hermit’s life of solitude is sad, uninteresting, monotonous and dull. I know some people like being a hermit. That’s great for them. I get it.
My natural tendencies or preference is to stick to myself, live in solitude like a hermit, too; however, I fight those inner voices because it’s not natural. We are social beings. There’s a reason why solitary confinement in prisons is a punishment.
It wasn’t until I put myself out there that I realized the benefits of being social (not a hermit) outweighed any anxiety I felt from coming out of my shell. You don’t agree? You do you, and I’ll do me. Let’s agree to disagree.
I still love keeping to myself and love my boring downtime days but there’s a balance.
One baby step at a time. Start small and do something new every day. If you’re searching for some inspiration, check out my list of 101 inspiring adventure quotes.
Before you know it, people will call you “THE FUN ONE”