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The Beauty of Boredom

The Beauty of Boredom

Jentrie Hales, community advocate, @techhealthyfamily

It was the witching hour here again in our household when my then 3-year-old asked the daily question: “Can I watch a movie?” I usually don’t have a problem with a movie a day, so this wasn’t a big deal to me. However, I felt that inkling to pause, and I responded instead this time with, “Nope, see what else you can do.” Immediately, there were tears and a level 7 tantrum on the kitchen floor. It was uncomfortable and loud and inconvenient, and I knew that if I caved in at any point, he would immediately cheer right up. Sound familiar? His conniption lasted a solid 45 seconds, and then, slowly, he came to terms with his reality. Within minutes, he created a game with a paper airplane and a basketball hoop. This experience was truly amazing to see this little boy harness the power of boredom while also enabling me the confidence to say “no” more often.

Boredom is something we ALL fight throughout the day. We fill every inch of our kid’s schedule with things and places to be; we don’t stop at a red light, wait in grocery store lines, or have five minutes of downtime without finding something to fill the quiet. (Cough cough, scrolling…

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