Boredom and Success

Human beings are the only beings on this planet who can feel bored. Feeling bored gives us an incredible advantage over the rest of the creatures in the animal kingdom.

Have you ever seen a bored mule? A bored buffalo? A bored gorilla? Be thankful they don’t get bored, or they’d be challenging us in the innovative world of business. It is boredom that got us out of the cave and into skyscrapers. It is boredom that got us off the back of mules and into horseless carriages (automobiles); thank you Henry Ford for being bored. It is boredom that has you with your own personal home computer; thank you Bill Gates for being bored.

Boredom is meant to be an inspirationally dissatisfying feeling; it is telling us that our lives could be better. Boredom can be great motivation to get us up off our duffs and make changes in our lives. Do you use it that way?

Thomas Edison was bored – look at all the inventions that he came up with! Martin Luther king Jr. was bored – look what he decided to do with his life! Grandma Moses was bored in her nineties – look at the artwork she produced at that age!

Whenever you are feeling bored (perhaps it’s in business, perhaps in your home life, perhaps in your social life), consider it inspirational dissatisfaction; it’s an opportunity to cause transformation in some domain of your life!

When I’m feeling bored, I stop and say, “I am bored, and so some changes are needed in my life – that’s great!” I don’t think of being bored as a bad sign – it’s a good sign. We are incredibly creative beings, and boredom is signaling us to remember that.

When you are feeling bored, consider the inspirationally dissatisfying feeling a gift from your creative essence. It wants to get going! Don’t allow yourself to sleepwalk through life. You are a supreme being with superlatively creative skills – use them! Come out of those limiting patterns of living; no longer declare yourself a part of the living dead – COME ALIVE!

What do you want to do with your life? Your business? Your dreams to travel the world? Do it. Don’t hesitate. Take risks. Don’t procrastinate. You only have one hundred short years to live on this planet – what are you waiting for?

If you feel bored with yourself it is because you have allowed 95% of yourself to lie dormant inside of you. You have not been respectful of your unlimited potential. Of all of your promises to yourself, the most important one is the one that you made to yourself when you were born – “I am going to use all of myself in this lifetime.” In order to succeed at life, in business, with your dreams – keep your word to yourself, use all of yourself up.

“We first make our habits and then our habits make us” – John Dryden. Make it a habit to consider your boredom to be inspirational dissatisfaction, and then let that habit make you into the incredibly creative being that you are meant to be.

What do you think? When have you been bored (inspirationally dissatisfied) with in your life? When have you done something about it? Please share.


“Best Comment of the Week”. This weeks best comment comes from Stephanie. The runner up is Bryan Thompson of Elevation Life. See their comments here.

Illustrations by nick

69 thoughts on “Boredom and Success”

  1. Ooooo! I am this week’s best comment!! I win!!! LOL!! Thank you for the suggestion from the “God in a Bod” post. It has been EXTREMELY useful in shutting up the “incessant tape recorder” running in my head!!

    I find that boredom and procrastination go hand-in-hand. Just this morning I schlepped to Starbucks for a “treat” of Chai tea, hopping that some morning air would get me going. What I KNOW, that I need to do, is what?

    Get to doin’ what needs doin’!! I am NEVER bored when in the midst of doing my “right work” or doing an activity that is in tune with my nature, so to speak.

    I think one of the keys is to overcome our inertia, (even better if we can find a way to not become inert in the first place), and then the rest will take care of itself, once we have some momentum going.

    I really, really enjoy reading your blog, Rob, and the comments of others, as it lets me know that I am not “unique” in my struggles.

    Blessings to you!

  2. Hi Rob,

    I love how you always have a way of looking at everyday things from a different perspective. Looking at boredom as a gift is certainly an unprecedented mindset, but it has been our pathway to growth. Boredom has lead to so many great things. Basketball was invented by a bored gym teacher throwing a ball into peach baskets.

    Boredom gives context to our life. It is what makes excitement so breathtaking, and dull moments so confining. A bored person won’t stay complacent for long.

    Great insight on this “inspirational dissatisfaction”


  3. John Adams said, “All great changes are irksome to the human mind.” He was talking about the conditioned mind that turns us into a human machine. Boredom comes from the heart-mind (the heart of our mind), which is connected to our creative essence, Stephanie. You are beginning to awaken to the truth about you … it shows in your responses. Keep Going! blessings

  4. I love your example of basketball being invented by a bored gym teacher, Chris. You show great insight into boredom. Thank you. Regardless of how we feel about our baffling boredom, there is an inspiring reason for it if we earnestly look deeper into the matter. blessings.

  5. First of all, I LOVE the cute little monkey sketches. They’re just adorable. :)

    I think we’re here to experience the physical and to create. When we stop doing that, when we stop expanding and playing, we get bored. We aren’t meant to stay still or stuck in one place. We’re meant to go forward, always looking for the next interesting toy or friend or activity. It’s about the experience of it all, the fun of it all and sitting still and doing nothing isn’t that much fun after a while. Unless there’s a hammock involved… ;)


  6. You’ve got the right perspective here! I have been feeling extremely inspirationally challenged at my current job. I guess that means its time to use this boredom as a springboard.

    I really appreciate this perspective. I’ll be coming by often :)

  7. Hmm. I can’t say that I ever really get bored. There’s always something I want to be working on or improving, and even if I were stuck in a five-foot prison cell under a mountain, I could easily leave it in my head, or spend my time communing with my spirit guides or improving my soul.

    I’ve always thought being bored meant being boring, in fact, since being alive is pretty entertaining in itself. But I really don’t want to live to be a hundred, thanks. I’m pretty sure the other side will be even less boring than this one, and I’m kind of looking forward to seeing it! Plus I’ve got somebody waiting on me over there, and I don’t want HIM getting bored.

    Wait, does not getting bored mean I’m not human? That would explain a lot, come to think of it. :P

  8. When Nick gets bored, Melody, he does monkey sketches. He enjoys knowing itmakes folks smile. One small part of you, Melody, always gets excited when you are bored, so let the truth fall on that part of you (and magic will happen!). Unless there’s a hammock involved. thank you

  9. Use boredom as a springboard – I like that, David. Ask yourself, when feeling bored, “If my present way is so right, then why am I feeling bored?” It’s an inspiring question when asked sincerely. blessings

  10. You’re funny, Anna. YES, not feeling bored would mean you are not human, so welcome to the ‘feeling bored club’. An awakened individual (LIKE YOU)is not hoaxed by boredom. blessings

  11. Hi Rob, This was a wake up call. I’m bored all the time. After reading this blog I started thinking about all the times I say “I’m bored.” I was shocked! I say it at work, I say when get home from work… I even think I say it when I am out drinking with my friends! It’s the weekend! That’s the ONE time I am not supposed to be bored. Now I’m bored AND depressed. Thanks a lot! haha :) But seriously, thanks for the wake up call.

  12. Hi Rob,

    This is a very helpful post! Whenever I’m “bored” it’s as if I believe I really can’t find something inspirational to do. Of course this isn’t true and I could always find something to stimulate my mind and body. Boredom seems to bring out the apathy in people or maybe it’s visa versa, but one way or another when we feel bored it’s seems motivation goes out the window. I’m certainly going to remind myself that boredom is sign to seek greater inspiration and utilize my creative nature from now on.

  13. Hi Rob!

    Wow, seems like we were on the same wavelength today – I wrote about feeling boredom in your business too! I took a more passive, but still positive, approach to those moments of just feeling “blah”.

    I have to say, though, that I am LOVING your words “inspirational dissatisfaction”. They are definitely fire-starters and I know I will refer to them going forward whenever I’m looking to get out of the doldrums.

    Thanks for a really great (and timely for me :-)) post today!

  14. “Boredom is meant to be an inspirationally dissatisfying feeling” Wow Rob! You do look at thing differently! I never thought about it but now I have to agree! My grandfather used to say, “Humans are never satisfied” a related concept I think.

    In my life and business, I don’t think I ever got bored. I always moved on to something new before boredom set in. It was only after I’d made a change that I looked back at the last thing and was bored by it. Things move along so fast for me.

    I remember learning when my kids were small that intelligent children were never bored. That’s because they always found a way to be interested and stimulated. I never heard my kids say they were bored, and they’re both doing very well in school today. There is no boredom in their lives!

    Boredom, then, can serve as a warning beacon. I like that. This post offers hope Rob!

  15. Wow Rob. I wish I had read this about 25 years ago. I thought it was a law that you had to be bored at work. Embarrassingly, I’ve only recently realized that my work life was killing my spirit. And it is pretty much because I was bored! Now I’ve expanded my business by taking on different kind of jobs. It’s been challenging but I must say it is stimulating.

  16. By psychic law, Alan, we get what we actually give with our attitudes and moods, which can be very different from what we say we are giving. You are learning. thank you.

  17. Only the security of knowing that boredom is actually ‘inspirational dissatisfaction’ can stand against habitual reactions. It’s time for a change! Thank you for noticing, Joe. blessings

  18. Boredom, Tisha, is a teaching tool. It supplies a higher definition of being inspired to do good things for yourself. Everything begins going right when we treat boredom with right respect, even in our business affairs. Thank you

  19. Indeed, Lori, boredom is a warning beacon. NICE. It is necessary to see through ourselves, and any resistance we have to boredom, to maintain higher levels of living. Blessings

  20. Folks who are bored at work, Roger, get caught in the trap of wandering into the past or into the future for entertainment. The secret to success is to leap back to the ‘liberty of now’ and use the boredom to raise your level of awareness to what life’s offering you. Blessings

  21. Great post, Rob!

    Boy, did your point here hit home: If you feel bored with yourself it is because … you have not been respectful of your unlimited potential.

    How true.

    When I found myself bored, time and again, I took it as a wake-up call to discover my life purpose and soul mission – and act on them.

    No sooner had I found my true calling and started focusing time, energy and attention on it, that I realized I was no longer bored. At all!

    What an important reminder. Thanks so much!

  22. Hi Rob,
    Perfect timing. Interestingly, today I found myself bored. It almost sounded strange when I heard myself say it because I haven’t felt that way in years. I love what you said about “it being an opportunity to cause transformation in some domain of your life”. That is so true. I erased my bordom today with inspiration.

  23. Hi Rob, I tell you I never understand how people can be bored with so much to do in this lifetime. In fact, I’m the opposite of bored… I get anxious because there is so much I want to get done. What can drive me crazy is all the boring tasks and rigmarole we have to put up with – they always seem to be petty distractions from real living. My challenge is do these tasks mindfully and stay present – when I stay present even during the “boring” stuff then I feel much more calmed and content

  24. It is a lot of fun to uncover one’s life-purpose, isn’t it Lil. Even when we feel like we are unable to uncover our life-purpose, a willingness to succeed will uncover it for us. Thank you, Lil.

  25. The fact that you are rarely bored says volumes about your soaring spirit, Angela. You explore life with the zeal of an adventurer who had discovered a new and wondrous continent. NICE. blessings

  26. Thank you for your honesty, Lisa. I feel bored a couple of times each week. I then say to myself, “Whether I am aware of it or not, I am inwardly asleep!” Thank you, Lisa.

  27. YES, indeed, Carol … staying mindful of the moment destroys boredom in an instant. Understanding that your personal world is not the entire world, makes boredom feel foolish. Thank you

  28. I always told my kids that there is no such thing as boredom only boring people! I remember vividly my mother telling this too me and it scared me straight to never, ever be bored! The last thing I wanted to be was a boring person. It’s a simple valuable lesson that had a profound effect on me. To this day I can’t sit down long enough to watch a sitcom because I think that is what bored people do.

  29. “Whenever you are bored..consider it inspirational disatisfaction’, yea baby that’s a worker for me. Spot on Rob! Boredom is brilliance being ignored or unemployed so it sits twidling its thumbs waiting for the call. If we’re bored we’re not firing up our spirit, revving our energies, and switching on the supply of inner fuel that shows the world what we got. When boredom comes to call it’s a surefire sign that we’re sure not on fire in our mind, imagination, and actions. Time to be born not yawn!

  30. WOW, I should have had you write this blog, John. REAL NICE! There is within you a secret book that has answers that are a thousand times better than what the world will teach you. You wrote this comment from that secret book. thank you.

  31. “Life’s not boring – we’re boring”. That’s right, Georgie. If we are bored, it is time to gain spiritual eyesight and see what it is time for us to do that is absolutely right for the moment. Seek and ye shall find. Blessings

  32. Hey Rob,
    Excellent subject for discussion! To me boredom means that you haven’t left your comfort zone and there is a predictability and sameness to life that is dispiriting. Leave your comfort zone in a significant way and I’ll guarantee you that the mixed feelings excitement,fear etc. will leave no room for boredom. Boredom is nature’s way of telling you that you are playing life too small. Good post my friend.

  33. Hi Rob,

    Excellent post! Usually when people are bored, they don’t have a goal or a vision to work for. I have learned that whenever I get “bored,” I have to do something that brings me closer to my goals and vision. If you think about it, we have a vision for each one of the life domains, so why not work towards improving our lives in each of these domains when we are “bored?”

    What distinguishes successful people from unsuccessful is that the successful learned to turn their boredom to their advantage as you discussed.

    Excellent job my friend and thanks for sharing :)

  34. I can’t remember the last time I felt bored Rob. I remember saying it when I was kid… probably because I had so much free time on my hands. Yet, even now, with free time, I can always find things to do. The best cure? Being creative. I write, draw or play the piano. Playing the piano is my best outlet, something I do every single day. Never, ever boring. Especially because I’m always learning new songs. And new genres.
    Teaching is another wonderful thing to do.
    Exactly as you’ve said… boredom is a signal to get creative. “A gift from your creative essence”. I love that!
    Unless… can being antsy qualify as being bored? Is that a type of dissatisfaction?
    This was a thought provoking post. And the comments are great. Thank you.

  35. Boring =’s not having left your comfort zone; NICE! Thank you for that. Sufferers of boredom wrongly believe that they will feel empty without their boredom, and so they resist their spirit’s offered cure. Blessings

  36. YES, Dia, successful folks do turn boredom to their advantage. Nice noticement. There is no way to seek the rewards offered by boredom if you don’t transform it into an advantage. Thank you

  37. You’re funny, Theresa. Is antsy a second cousin to boredom? MAYBE! As boredom fades through insight into its real purpose, we cease to attract antsyness. blessings

  38. Oh yeah, I know the bored feeling. There is nothing worse than when I get bored with my music. That’s when I know it is time to try something new. Artists get bored with their work all the time. They have to mix it up. This when musicians piss off their fans. The fans want them to keep making the same music over and over again, but a real artists knows and feels that that is impossible, worse than death! YEah right on, Rob. Great Art comes from being bored and dissatisfied.

  39. Ughhhh. I get soooo bored at work! That’s why I need to get out. I’m totally dissatisfied… if there is one thing I am sure of these days it is THAT. I need new friends and a new career. I guess the good news is I am super motivated. Soooo, I just have to stay “inspirationally dissatisfied” I love that!

  40. Rob,

    I loved this. This is such a unique and honest perspective on how to utilize every moment in life. When I am bored I usually find something useless to do like playing video games or staring at the wall. :-) Now with the info you provided I will use it as a creative outlet to find areas in which I can improve my own life or the life of others. We often get bored when we reach a certain level of success but if we take risks and reach for the unknown we can accomplish things that seem impossible. Thanks for the inspiration to do things differently.

  41. you’re an interesting individual, Frank. You show a lot of insight into life, and yet it seems to me that you hold back. Clearly you have moved beyond many of your old thinking channels, and yet, contacting pure truth and completely merging and mingling with it are two very different things. You are on your way. Keep going. Don’t stop! blessings

  42. Your enthusiasm for life makes it difficult for boredom to stick around, Kara. You don’t wish for boredom to interfere with your progress, and it has a difficult time with you. blessings

  43. Great art comes from being bored – nice noticement, John. We pay a high price (as artists) when we merely think that boredom is part of the deal. blessings

  44. I enjoy your take on boredom and the many examples that you have shared. Come to think of it, it was precisely that I was bored that I decided to start searching for ways to keep myself mentally inspired. It was how I came upon doing businesses on the web. And I had felt challenged ever since. There was never a dull moment. There are always things to learn, unlearn and learn again.

  45. You speak with wisdom, Evelyn. wisdom is knowledge that comes from experience, not just reading books. There is never a dull moment when we are learning through experience. Your real intelligence, Evelyn, quietly knows itself … having no compulsion to promote itself. Boredom is a signal, telling you to promote more of your real intelligence. blessings

  46. I don’t think I get bored, I just like having nothing to do. I’m all about relaxing and taking it easy. I work hard all week and when I chill out I CHILL out! :) I think some people stay busy because they are out of touch with themselves. They buzz around like they are busy and important but in reality they don’t know what to do with themselves. Hmm, maybe I get bored with being busy… to me it feels like I am missing out on real life.

  47. They do say that “idle hands do the devils work” and I would venture to say that bored minds are captivated by the opiates of society. Why else would all these people care about tabloid news or give a rat’s ass about what Charlie Sheen is doing – they must be bored! Boredom is big problem with the world today if you really stop to think about. America is dumbing down because they don’t what else to do with themselves besides watch TV. The answer is easy enough — get out into life and do something productive.

  48. Nice distinction, Rus. ‘Chilling out’ and ‘boring’ are very different things. What beautiful freedom at not having to strain at ‘chilling out’. some folks don’t know how to do that. blessings

  49. Hi Lynne! Consider wrong thoughts about boredom as unnecessary distractions to a fruitful day. Read that three times, please. It’s enlightening! blessings

  50. atta boy, Salty. you have been really coming around these days with optimistic (not salty) responses. It is possible to sense the existence of a higher path – you are sensing it! blessings.

  51. Whoa… this is deep Rob! When I get ansty it’s like a feeling of “I can’t get no satisfaction.” I can bounce from one thing I really to enjoy to another – without ever settling into one thing. You know what I mean?

    You’re being pretty profound here. Do I need a thinking cap? So, let’s see… ‘boredom fades through our insight into its real purpose’ – call it creative satisfaction – then…

    I think I need to read your post again.

    Okay, I’m back. This is what I really love. You said, “I am going to use all of myself in this lifetime.”

    Now that would cease to attract antsyness. I completely agree.


  52. Nothing is more stupid than boredom. It is an act of trickery to think boredom is inspiring. It’s just something that people with no purpose do. You’re making too much of it.

  53. Yo WHAT UP ROBBBBB! I’m never bored! I’m wheeling and dealing 24/7. I wish I didn’t have to sleep so much or I’d be a multi multi millionaire by now son!! By the end of the day I am all USED UP! I like that. My life is simple: I’m either making MAD money or making it with the LADIES!!! HAHAHA. What else is there?? Who could be bored with so much left to do!!!!

  54. Hi Rob,

    Super relevant post on boredom given the high levels of boredom that surround us.

    I don’t believe we come into the world bored. I believe our schooling system creates bored folks who become stripped of their natural curiosity and drive. They do this to form us into obedient consumers, who will shop to relieve their boredom.

    Once I extricated myself from being a stepford shopper, I re-engaged with my own curiosity.

    I can’t wait to get up now and self-learn, self-experience life. Am always involved in lots of fun and freeing activities. Recently, I retook up archery. My husband and I love it!

    thx, G.

  55. Hey Rob, this is good for me. When I get bored I do stupid things like play video games and watch TV. In my youth boredom used to get me in trouble. At least video games are fairly benign. I love the feeling of being excited by a new project or a new lead. Somehow that extra time just seems to vanish and suddenly there is no time for being bored. I would like to live everyday like that. TV is a good escape but honestly after I’m done I feel a little depressed, like I’m wasting my life or something.

  56. Wow, I never thought of being bored as an inspirational dissatisfying feeling. And looking at it through this lens, it truly is a gift.
    The curse, as I used to think of it, is when we decide to do nothing with it. It’s a waste to not use the energy. If we’re bored, it’s because we have reserved energy in the tank that needs to be applied to something productive.

    I can easily see the truth behind this. It’s like when I’m feeling bored and I do something about it, my decisions are more often the right ones and whatever I do, I feel naturally powered to do it. It doesn’t feel forced. It’s like I can almost operate on autopilot…I get in a zone!

    But on the contrary, when I’m bored and don’t do anything with it, except bask in my sorrows and complain, the feeling doesn’t give me the gas like motivation to get up and change my situation. In this instance I feel more depressed – probably because I’m not falling in line with my subconscious.

    This information, Rob, gives me a new way of handling boredom – it’s a source of motivation if I allow it to be. Or, it’s a source to place me into a mental and emotional prison if I so choose that route.

    I don’t have a lot of moments in my day-to-day life that I’m bored. I have so many activities in my day that it’s really hard to allow room for boredom. But there are mornings when I wake up and I say; I’m bored with doing ‘this or that’. I’ve rationalized this and ignored it…but now I see it as empowerment…a self generated message that something needs to change, and tucked within me somewhere I have the power and energy to do it. We’re always looking for signs – and this is a great sign.

    This is one of my favorites Rob. It’s actionable and simple. Thank you SO MUCH for this. It’s serious something that I can never forget. I feel it’s imprint.


  57. I have an idea, Jk. Let me write the first half of a book with my ideas … and you write the second half with your personal experiences of my ideas. IT IS A NATIONAL BEST SELLER. I can see it now! There is nothing boring about that! you are so marvelously transparent, Jk. It’s a gift. Very few people are willing to bring their lives to the conversation of growth and development, because then they’d have to look at the truth about themselves. Most folks are terribly fearful of doing that. Truth’s compassion is incredibly obvious when it asks, “How can I help you?” You are keenly aware of this Jk. thank you.

  58. I would love to meet you, an archer, Giulietta. I don’t know any archers and have always wanted to meet one. Right progress begins with an orderly and satisfying response to boredom. You have this down. Thank you for showing us how you progress. It’s a gift. Blessings

  59. YES, Richard, television is most folks escape from boredom. Have a grand plan for your life, and television gets boring! Thank you. blessings

  60. Thank you for your opinion, Kevin. If your opinion works for you, then I support it. If it doesn’t, then let’s go deeper. blessings.

  61. A sincere desire for growth activates fresh intelligence, Magic. What if at the end of the day, you thought that you were ‘all used up’, but discovered there was energy left that goes sky high … then what? blessings

  62. I LOVE that idea Rob. National Best Seller sounds so good. Not just because of the accolades – but because that means the REACH is so far. The impact is so widespread…that puts a machine behind the mission.

    Your ideas and thoughts really make me think deeply. If I just take it at the surface level, I don’t grasp it fully. I have to sit on it, think about it…and when I’m able to get somewhat past my ego (although that hurts sometimes), and get honest with myself – my experience just spews out…and as a result – I learn the lesson (at least the basis of the lesson).

    It wasn’t until our relationship that I found it a part of who I am to share some of my personal stories with ‘whoever’. I’m rather personal from my life experiences, but I’ve learned over the past 10 months or so that the more I can speak about things, the more I can let the past go. You have been a great source in helping me release some of the 60,000 NO’s. I still have a long way to go…but the process is in effect.

    Thank you,

  63. I’m 98% complete with my second book: MARVELOUS DENIALS AND WONDERFUL OBSESSIONS. so, so I am ready for book three, and let’s make a deal. Let’s collaborate on a book together. I will come up with some incredibly unique ideas (which I am good at doing), and you will comment on them from your experiences in the world (which you are great at doing). We are combining two talents that will truly make a difference. Let’s do it. What we become with this ‘alliance of two minds’ is far greater than we think, so with delight I ask that we rise above habitual thinking and seal the deal. blessings

  64. Well this is certainly a good way to look at things. The biggest challenge I have with being unemployed is the boredom. I have to find ways to entertain myself or else I’d go crazy. But just distracting myself is depressing because I know I’m not really doing anything useful. Being Inspirationaly Dissatisfied is a great way to look at things. I feel better already this week I’ve really taken a look at how I can use this time to be more creative.

  65. The only way to feel in a new and superior way, Ramone, is to think in a new and superior way. You are now contemplating the idea of boredom in a new and superior way. blessings.

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