This morning, my daughter and I were having an interesting conversation. She's a couple weeks away from turning six which means she's constantly thinking about a lot of weird stuff and asks a lot of seemingly random questions. She asked me what "bored" means.
She's my fourth (and last) kid. Having three other kids (ages 14, 15 and 23) I've heard at least a couple hundred thousand (rough estimate) exasperated "I'm so bored" statements. Why do kids expect us, their parents, to fix their boredom?
So, I thought, wow, maybe if I define this for her right, I won't have to hear "I'm bored" another hundred thousand times in the next ten or so years.
Somewhat pleased with myself, and inspired by that above-mentioned post on responsibility, I answered her: "Bored is how you feel when you haven't yet decided what you're going to do next."
This makes me think about boredom in jobs, boredom with where we are in life. Has a lot to do with proactivity and decisiveness, doesn't it?
Also has me thinking about needing to teach our kids to rely on themselves more. If we leap to entertain them when they're bored (and what parent hasn't, even if just to shut them up??) how will they learn to be responsible for their own feelings and take action?
Aside from my 'boring' example, are there other ways we unitentionally help kids or employees, or even bosses, be less personally responsible?