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What Lies Beneath Boredom

Personalized support for learning how to integrate mindfulness into your life. Delivered fresh everyday by our world renowned experts. Choose meditation duration:

Hi, and welcome to your Daily Mindfulness. Today, I'm going to talk about what lies beneath boredom. So when we take up regular meditation practice, it's likely that at some stage along the way that we'll experience a little bit of boredom arising. And, you know, when it does, the important thing is not to see boredom as a problem or something bad that you need to get rid of. Instead, that the point is to learn to relate to it in a skillful way.

In fact, what we might actually find is there is a lot that we can discover through this process that can help us live a more fulfilling life. Because, you know, if you think about how most of us are living daily life these days, we are constantly bombarded with mental stimuli. Really with hardly any space left to stop and simply be. We wake up in the morning, maybe we start scrolling. We cram in as much as possible into our to-do list.

And, you know, we fill our social calendars. So what happens is we get really used to living in a state of almost hyperstimulation, so that any gaps of stillness, silence, or slowness, where there's nothing left to do suddenly brings up uncomfortable feelings. So if we find ourselves sitting at home alone, all the to-dos are ticked off, we often scramble for the phone or the laptop. If we have to wait a few moments in line at the store, we often start to feel awkward. So instead of just standing there waiting, we grab our phones and we start surfing the web.

When we're so conditioned to always being so busy and distracted, it's really easy to see why we can become bored really easily in our meditation. You know, without all of that constant stimuli. And when it arises, this feeling of boredom, you might think, you know, what's the point of this meditation, I could easily find something more interesting or productive to be doing. But if we do that every single time, if we go and get more stimulation, every single time we feel uncomfortable, we're kind of perpetually caught in this knee-jerk response to any uncomfortable feeling where we just make ourselves more and more busy and distracted. Now over time, this can become a bit of a habit and we can end up lost in a haze of doing and automaticity and not really fully present or truly fulfilled in our lives.

So the opportunity here is a big one. It's to learn to stay with boredom instead of running from it. And in doing that, we train our minds to gently face the discomfort and let it be as it is. We're training ourselves to stay present, calm and grounded when discomfort arises instead of automatically reacting to it. So the next time you experienced boredom, instead of running away from it, see if you can just gently allow yourself to feel it and be present with it.

Get curious about boredom. See what it's actually made up of. Is it a feeling in the body? Is it a thought? Maybe both? Maybe through this exploration, you'll find that it's not so intolerable to feel after all. And when we train ourselves to do this in meditation, the benefits really translate into daily life. We become less reactive and distracted, more clear headed, calm, and genuinely at ease within our own skin.

As always, thank you for your practice and for being here in this community. Let's settle in now for today's meditation.

Melli O'Brien

4.8

What Lies Beneath Boredom

Personalized support for learning how to integrate mindfulness into your life. Delivered fresh everyday by our world renowned experts. Choose meditation duration:

Duration

Your default time is based on your progress and is changed automatically as you practice.

Hi, and welcome to your Daily Mindfulness. Today, I'm going to talk about what lies beneath boredom. So when we take up regular meditation practice, it's likely that at some stage along the way that we'll experience a little bit of boredom arising. And, you know, when it does, the important thing is not to see boredom as a problem or something bad that you need to get rid of. Instead, that the point is to learn to relate to it in a skillful way.

In fact, what we might actually find is there is a lot that we can discover through this process that can help us live a more fulfilling life. Because, you know, if you think about how most of us are living daily life these days, we are constantly bombarded with mental stimuli. Really with hardly any space left to stop and simply be. We wake up in the morning, maybe we start scrolling. We cram in as much as possible into our to-do list.

And, you know, we fill our social calendars. So what happens is we get really used to living in a state of almost hyperstimulation, so that any gaps of stillness, silence, or slowness, where there's nothing left to do suddenly brings up uncomfortable feelings. So if we find ourselves sitting at home alone, all the to-dos are ticked off, we often scramble for the phone or the laptop. If we have to wait a few moments in line at the store, we often start to feel awkward. So instead of just standing there waiting, we grab our phones and we start surfing the web.

When we're so conditioned to always being so busy and distracted, it's really easy to see why we can become bored really easily in our meditation. You know, without all of that constant stimuli. And when it arises, this feeling of boredom, you might think, you know, what's the point of this meditation, I could easily find something more interesting or productive to be doing. But if we do that every single time, if we go and get more stimulation, every single time we feel uncomfortable, we're kind of perpetually caught in this knee-jerk response to any uncomfortable feeling where we just make ourselves more and more busy and distracted. Now over time, this can become a bit of a habit and we can end up lost in a haze of doing and automaticity and not really fully present or truly fulfilled in our lives.

So the opportunity here is a big one. It's to learn to stay with boredom instead of running from it. And in doing that, we train our minds to gently face the discomfort and let it be as it is. We're training ourselves to stay present, calm and grounded when discomfort arises instead of automatically reacting to it. So the next time you experienced boredom, instead of running away from it, see if you can just gently allow yourself to feel it and be present with it.

Get curious about boredom. See what it's actually made up of. Is it a feeling in the body? Is it a thought? Maybe both? Maybe through this exploration, you'll find that it's not so intolerable to feel after all. And when we train ourselves to do this in meditation, the benefits really translate into daily life. We become less reactive and distracted, more clear headed, calm, and genuinely at ease within our own skin.

As always, thank you for your practice and for being here in this community. Let's settle in now for today's meditation.

Melli O'Brien

4.8

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