The team of people who work at Awakening Coaching get together regularly on Google Hangout to catch up on things. “How was your weekend?” “What are the upcoming courses we are offering?” “How is the new book?” But we also like to talk about the state of the world.
We were chatting together about what is going on these days, what is in the news. What are people talking about? Shannon, our young VA, was laughing at me when I asked for a little clarification about the Kardashians. I don’t have a TV, and she was shocked that I could be so ill-informed.
“Please,” I said, “Explain it to me. Who are they and what do they do?”
“Well,” said Shannon, “Their father was a defense attorney who represented O.J. Simpson.”
“Great!” I said, “But on it’s own that’s not exactly a claim to fame, what do they do?”
“Well, their mother married an Olympic athlete.”
“Ok… But what is it that makes them famous? What do they actually do?”
“I don’t know,” stumbled Shannon. “They’re just famous for being famous! They have a reality TV show.”
It has taken me a little while to get used to this idea. When I grew up (a long, long, long, time ago, my children, long before the Internet or cell phones or people used words like WTF and OMG), people were famous for doing something special. The Beatles were famous for making music. Steve McQueen, Julie Christie and Dustin Hoffman were famous for being actors. Agatha Christie wrote crime novels. But nobody was famous just for being famous.
Particularly in America we are a society obsessed with celebrity. People Magazine, and 5 gazillion other forums like it, fill us in on the latest news of who is wearing what, who is having marital troubles, who is eating which kind of frozen yogurt. We want the scoop on the finest details of the lives of celebrities, and we want it now.
In an incomprehensible and tragic event a few days ago, Australian college baseball player Chris Lane was shot in the back by three teenagers, in Oklahoma. I’m sure you read the story. When interviewed by the police, the teenagers confessed immediately to the crime, and they offered up an interesting motivation.
They were bored.
It might be worth taking a moment now, you and me, in the midst of our busy lives to think about this. They were bored. This boredom was obviously so extreme, and had infiltrated every area of their life to such an overwhelming degree, that the only thing left to create some excitement was to kill another human being.
But let’s face it, it is not only teenagers in Oklahoma who are suffering from boredom, it is a national epidemic. It is boredom that drives us to tweet and re-tweet, it is boredom that has us checking the Facebook news feed many times a day, and it is boredom that makes the lives of people who are famous, for no reason at all, interesting to us, just to stay stimulated with something. Anything.
There is a cure to boredom. I have tried it and it works. I am not a particularly spectacular individual, I do not think anyone is going to make a reality TV show about me anytime soon. I will probably never be regarded as a celebrity. I have not launched a clothing line. The details of my daily life are not of interest to millions of people. But there is one thing I feel really great about being me, which is that I have not felt bored for a really, really long time. I would guess for at least 25 years. In fact, I honestly can’t remember what the word is supposed to refer to.
The cure to boredom is very simple, and I’ll give you a hint right now. It is not so much to do with filling your life with more and more distracting things, it has got a lot more to do with learning how to pay attention to the extraordinary mysterious firework display of life that is already happening in this very moment, right under your eyes.
As you probably know, I teach a training called Awakening Coaching. We train coaches to be facilitators of shifts in consciousness. You could explain this in many ways: bringing practical mysticism into day to day life, dissolving the feeling of separation, realizing the infinite consciousness experiencing all name and form. Blah, blah, blah. But I think the simplest way to explain what we mean by awakening is this: we have a radical, kick-ass, works-every-time cure for boredom. Guaranteed.
Please join me on Saturday, August 24 at 10 AM and I’ll teach you everything you need to know on how to eliminate boredom from your life and bring the snap, crackle and pop back into your immediate experience. If you can’t make the live call, register anyway and you’ll get access to the replay.