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Boring people. I don't get it. Trying to understand.

I met up with an old high school friend of mine. It turns out he joined the Army a few years ago. It seemed a little out of the blue. When I asked him why, he said that he felt like he was going through a mid-life crisis. In a weird way, I wasn't surprised. To put it bluntly, he's a boring person. He always played it safe. He doesn't have any hobbies. He's not passionate about anything. When I ask him what he does with his free time, he says, "nothing."

There's so much to do in this world, and he there isn't anything that interests him? Seems like a waste to me.

He's not the only person I've met like that. It mystifies me how some people spend their time doing nothing.

I feel sorry him, but at the same time, why isn't he trying? As far as I know, he's not shy. He's social. He's well adjusted. He doesn't have any debilitating personality issues. He's more sociable than I am, but he's not seeking out the social interaction that he craves.

The only thing I can think of is that he lacks initiative. When I get bored enough, I'll call people up and set something up, but he wouldn't.

Could it be some form of depression? Low self-esteem? Fear of rejection?

Comments

  • MaryAnne said:

    Why not just ask if he's "happy"?
    If he says Yes, for goodness sakes, leave him be. :)
    If he says No, for goodness sakes, leave him be. ;)

    LOL. I am going to leave him be. I don't see him very often, and don't have much desire to.

    Didn't get a chance to ask if he's happy. We just did a lot of catching up. I hope he's happy.
    Invincible_summer
  • People are all different. Maybe you don't have much in common with him so you don't understand.
    SabreNiesjecvalue
  • Doing nothing is the best thing in the world. I wish I could do it more often.
    lobsterNiesje
  • Someone say to me once that: "If you're Bored you're probably being Boring."
    If your friend is fine doing nothing but you get bored by that, is your problem, not him.

    Niesjecvalue
  • seeker242seeker242 Zen Florida, USA Veteran
    Doing nothing isn't really that boring IMO. I learned this spending time at a monastery where there is absolutely nothing to do! No TV, no internet, no nothing! Sure they had books but that gets old after a while... After about a day or two you realize there is nothing to do so you just go for a walk or something. Listen to the birds chirp, etc. After you get over the initial "boredom stage", doing nothing actually becomes quite interesting. :lol:
    HamsakaFullCircle
  • Some say I'm boring. I can have a conversation between myself and another person, but I don't talk much in groups. But it's just how I am lol. I'm not sad. It's a personality type is all :)
    still_learning
  • ZenBadgerZenBadger Derbyshire, UK Veteran
    Or maybe he is being polite by not boring you with the details. I spend a lot of time painting lead soldiers while listening to the radio but I know that most people's eyes glaze over when I mention words like "argyraspid", "kataphraktoi" or "Khazar mounted drill team".
  • To each their own my friend. I have said it before and will again, it is impossible to understand anybody else's point of view or opinion to 100% as you are not that person. What you may consider fun somebody else may not, what you consider exciting others may find boring, what you consider bad others may consider good.

    For example, I would probably be a boring person to you. I simply scroll the net most days, work from home, sometimes I will go to the market on an evening or go skating, rarely do I go to the beach or anything like this, yet I am content this way. It is only a problem if you are not content, if this person is content in what they are doing so be it, you have labeled them boring from your perspective.
    betaboy
  • I heard a conversation similar only a month or so back. The first guy said "I don’t understand my son he just will not listen to me" I only remember this becous of the second guy reply he said “O right so you don’t understand him cos he won’t listen to you, I always thought to understand, one was supposed to do the listening”

    Excellent response wish I was that quick thinking.

    this post just reminded me of this.
    MaryAnneNeleNiesje
  • The OP's question reminds me of a time decades ago - then I knew a person who would go on and on about his hobbies and interests and medical conditions and...at one point he asked me "What do YOU do? Are you passionate about anything?" ...and I was speechless, and felt small. Style and method can intimidate, with or without self esteem issues. Oh to have known Buddhism in my 20s.
    poptart
  • Thanks for the thoughtful responses.

    I do want to listen to him, but getting him to elaborate is like pulling teeth, which is ironic, because he's a dentist. And he was the one who wanted to meet up and talk.

    I asked questions and followup questions. I was eager to hear his story, but he just gave short answers. He was never a good storyteller.

    I just got the impression that he was bored with his life and was not content because he mentioned mid-life crisis.

    I rarely find myself bored. If I do, I either find something to do or enjoy the peace and quiet.

    TBH, I am boring to some people.
  • I met up with an old high school friend of mine. It turns out he joined the Army a few years ago. It seemed a little out of the blue. When I asked him why, he said that he felt like he was going through a mid-life crisis. In a weird way, I wasn't surprised. To put it bluntly, he's a boring person. He always played it safe. He doesn't have any hobbies. He's not passionate about anything. When I ask him what he does with his free time, he says, "nothing."

    There's so much to do in this world, and he there isn't anything that interests him? Seems like a waste to me.

    He's not the only person I've met like that. It mystifies me how some people spend their time doing nothing.

    I feel sorry him, but at the same time, why isn't he trying? As far as I know, he's not shy. He's social. He's well adjusted. He doesn't have any debilitating personality issues. He's more sociable than I am, but he's not seeking out the social interaction that he craves.

    The only thing I can think of is that he lacks initiative. When I get bored enough, I'll call people up and set something up, but he wouldn't.

    Could it be some form of depression? Low self-esteem? Fear of rejection?

    Everyone is born different. Don't worry.
    EvenThird
  • Niesje said:

    Some say I'm boring. I can have a conversation between myself and another person, but I don't talk much in groups. But it's just how I am lol. I'm not sad. It's a personality type is all :)

    How exciting. Keep up the good work . . . and to all you lurkers . . .Hi

    :wave:

    Thanks for your contribution :)
  • Niesje said:

    Some say I'm boring. I can have a conversation between myself and another person, but I don't talk much in groups. But it's just how I am lol. I'm not sad. It's a personality type is all :)

    Actually, that's how I am too! Because of that, I've been accused of being anti-social. But really, I just don't feel the need/want to talk to people as often as others do.
    riverflow
  • BhikkhuJayasaraBhikkhuJayasara Bhikkhu Veteran
    edited November 2013
    I'm pretty boring to most people because I don't party or drink, nor do I like profesional sports or have a girlfriend or wife or kids or talk much about anything else besides buddhism. Therefore people find it hard to communicate.

    I do do extreme endurance events and stuff like that, which some people find interesting about me, but I don't really talk about it except with the people I do it with.
  • Our schools run over our failure to understand. The teacher just keeps going and we get lost. That lost feeling accumulates and soon we can't confront the world. We give up or feel hostile and withdraw. Awareness can help with understanding. When a person doesn't reach for life little can be done. This is vexatious-see the eight fold path.
    A little charity and less contempt on your part might help. Best, Dennis
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