What Joy in Boredom

February 27, 2008

My morning writing exercises (a.k.a. Morning Pages) really suck this week.  I find myself spending three pages saying over and over “I don’t have anything to say.”  They feel like a complete waste of time.

I think the main problem is that I feel overworked and stressed out.  I’m in desperate need of time without responsibilities, homework, social committments, bills, etc.  I crave a morning that I can wake up and think “Hey, I don’t have any burning this-is-due-yesterday issues on my plate today!  What to do….  what to do…..”  What pure joy that would be — to twiddle my thumbs, open the door to my house, look out on the world, throw my arms out and say “Here I am, serendipity, come get me!  Tickle my senses, carve new and wonderful thoughts into my brain, make me a creative being!”

I remember the days as a child when a box of candy was enough to thrill me and boredom sucked.  Now candy just stresses me out and what turns me on are: (1) getting a good nights sleep and (2) enough time with absolutely nothing to do.

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3 Responses to “What Joy in Boredom”

  1. Ned said

    I think I’m sick because I’m stressed out. I’m home all day trying to make this work. I’ve established these deadlines and expectations in my head (I NEED to make money). I’m doing the proverbial shooting myself in the foot.

    As for the morning exercise, why not take the headline from one of those daily meditation books and write about that? I’m sure there’s an rss feed that could do the same thing.

    Just a suggestion… does that go against the purpose of writing the morning pages or something?

  2. Jane said

    Hi, Ned. I’m hardly one to tell you how to lead your life, but I will throw out this suggestion. Trust in your abilities, and trust that the universe will support you. Make sure that above all, whatever you do, you don’t lose the strength in your foundation, so that when the universe does come you’re ready to go. I wouldn’t be saying this if I didn’t see something special in your writing. Make sure you’re taking care of yourself and not pushing yourself to the breaking point.

    Fantastic idea about the morning writing exercise! No, there are no rules to the morning writing exercise except “no stopping”. It just needs to be a constant stream-of-consciousness. Getting an idea of something and going with it might be just the kick-start I need.

  3. Ned said

    I’ve also found it helpful when I have nothing to write to start describing something in my immediate vicinity. There’s a line from Thich Nhat Hahn, “If you are a poet, then you can see a cloud in this piece of paper.” The inter-being of all things.

    Anyway, glad I could help.

    Thank you for the suggestion. It’s something I know, but desperately needed someone to say to me. If that makes any sense.

    May you find a moment this weekend with a lifeline and not a deadline 🙂

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