Despite the way overblown noise that came with the Black guys in Philly recently, I like Starbucks. And I don’t even drink coffee.
I wrote three of my books — The Mental Handbook, The Super You and The Mirror Of Motivation — while sitting at a Starbucks in Miami (not all on the same day). Starbucks is a ubiquitous, commonly known place where anyone can sit and drink coffee, hold conversation, work, or just do nothing. And you (usually) don’t even have to buy anything to use the tables and chairs.
Sometimes, I sit at Starbucks just to watch the people go by. No checking social media, no laptop, no doing anything. I may have something playing in my Bluetooth earpiece, but I’m fully available. Just watching.
I was doing just that this morning when a guy came and sat at the table next to mine. I like to sit at a high-top table (when available) and turn the chair to face the sidewalk. This guy turned his chair to match mine; maybe he saw it as a good idea. He had a set of wireless headphones that he plugged into his ears and commenced sipping his drink.
Within one minute of sitting, I could see through my peripheral vision that the guy was out of his element.
His right leg — an unconscious human indicator of what our brain wants to do —- never stopped moving, and his body was hunched and tensed, as if ready for action. The guy looked around constantly, as if he was waiting for somethingto happen.
He lasted maybe five minutes before grabbing his pastry bag and his drink and moving on. I think he was bored.
For Your Game
- Many people are afraid to be bored: Alone, with nothing to do, no one to talk to, and nothing to distract them (like a smartphone). Go somewhere public and look for a person who’s sitting or standing by himself. How long before a phone comes out? Not even ten seconds, most likely. The result of this inability to bored: Your subconscious mind never gets the opportunity to speak to you. Your hunches and instincts and Ah-Ha! moments are all delivered by the subconscious. If you haven’t had any of these moments lately, now you know why. The Mental Workbook will help you get back in touch.
- Being bored has negative connotations, as if you must be doing something wrong if you don’t have a job to do or a task to complete. This is 100% false, an idea that our culture of work-consume-repeat has baked into your being. Think of the people you know who have calm, poised energy, who are rarely rattled or unsettled, even in difficulty: That’s not some natural talent. You’re looking at a person who knows how to be bored.
- How I condition myself for boredom: Meditation. There are myriad apps out there for doing so. A minimum ten minutes of daily meditation is part of my daily routine, along with yoga and working out and coming up with ideas. You can decide if these are all interconnected or not. All this opening and conditioning of your mind lays the groundwork for the Bulletproof Mindset.
When’s the last time you were bored, and what did you do (or not do)? How long can you sit with nothing to do before you go crazy and/or reach for your device? Reply and share with me.