TED Conversations

greg dahlen

Alumnus, academy of achievement


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When we're bored, or find something boring, why is that?

An example of this came up in another conversation, where a fellow was saying that watching a farmer farm would be boring. And it made me wonder why in general we might find something boring, or be bored. I think I'm blessed in that I'm rarely bored, if I'm bored I ask myself what I might enjoy doing, and then do it. Do others find they are frequently bored, seldomly bored, or in the middle?


Closing Statement from greg dahlen

I think I should have done this question differently. I should have asked if other people ever find themselves bored, and if they know why. I think I'm blessed, I really am never bored. I have the perception other people are, but I should have checked that.

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    Mar 29 2013: .

    Boring is an instinct ---- valid suffering.
    It drives us to find a-step-better for keeping our DNA alive.
    It makes us survive.
    (For details, see the 1st article, point 2(4) at
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      Mar 29 2013: Dear W. Ying,
      I do not believe for a minute that boring is an instinct. In my 60+ years experience, it appears to be a choice. I am still alive and well, and have never been bored, so I cannot agree that it "makes us survive".
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        Mar 29 2013: Colleen, I actually love Mr. Ying's answer here. I think he would say that someone could have lived their entire life without being bored, but if one is bored, it's not a trivial thing, it's telling you to do something that makes you more attractive so that you have a better chance of mating and procreating. For instance, if you're bored with your look, your feeling is telling you to change it, make it more attractive so that, as I said, you have a better chance of mating.

        If you've never been bored, perhaps that shows you were very smart, you headed it off at the pass. How have you done on the mating/procreation tip?
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          Mar 30 2013: OK....we all have different perceptions and preferences. If you think feeling bored is telling you to do something to be more attractive so there is a better chance to mate and procreate.....so be it. I've never felt bored, nor have I ever felt that I needed to change something about myself in order to mate and procreate.

          I think my lack of bordom demonstrates curiosity rather than "smart". I don't think I'm particularly smart, and I KNOW for sure that I am very curious:>)

          I am content with the mating/procreation I've experienced:>)

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