Life

Growing up and getting boring

Growing up is something that I’ve always been told is a choice. Growing old you can’t avoid but growing up… that’s all on you.

The implication is that it’s best to stay young. Full of excitement and adventure! And growing up is what boring, stuffy, settled people do. I resisted “growing up” for years because I thought that was what made me cool and interesting. But in the last year or so, I stopped resisting and naturally I “grewup”.

I genuinely wasn’t expecting it to happen. Like I said, I thought it was a choice. But one day I thought, ‘I haven’t been clubbing in a while’. I hadn’t even made conscious decisions to not go clubbing. It just wasn’t even on my agenda anymore. I noticed that as a self-proclaimed extrovert who needs to be around people constantly and thrives in group situations, I’d changed. First of all, groups exhaust me now. I don’t think I’ve ever Irish-goodbyed out of events as much as I have the last year. It’s like a switch has been flicked from really care about conversations with strangers and making new friends to literally can’t be fucked, get me to my bed.

Am I boring now?

By society’s standards “interesting” is having new experiences and meeting different people. “Boring” is not doing any of that and staying home by yourself. But that’s not boring!

Yes I’ve grown up. Staying in, cooking dinner and watching Bake Off sounds far more appealing than a work event where I’ll have to mingle and actually talk to people. But I don’t think that makes me boring. The “interesting” types were the popular kids in school but just because you know more people and are the loudest doesn’t mean the quieter ones are any less interesting.

I used to be one of those people who needed a BIG life to be happy. People had to be jealous of my life. I used to judge people who were satisfied by a small life, I couldn’t understand how they were so content with a simple, “boring” life. But thinking about it now, I get it. Don’t get me wrong, I’m still an extrovert and crave new experiences that’ll make great dinner party anecdotes. But I realise that they only satisfy me in the short term. I’d have to keep seeking and seeking, trying to find the next thing to get my happy-fix from.

But turns out that the things that make me feel content in the long-term are “boring”. Growing up and having a small but incredible group of friends. Being happy in your own company. Going for walks. Hosting dinner parties. Playing board games. Going home early so you can get 8 hours sleep.

This obviously doesn’t happen all at once, it’s gradual. But I remember the other day thinking how much I’ve changed since I moved to London. If I compare an average week I have now to an average week I had in the first year I moved, the difference is wild! But I didn’t even notice the change happening. Three years ago my average week was a blend of coffee meetings, day-dates, evening events, drinking 12 nights in a row until I realised I’d been drinking 12 nights in a row. Just thinking about the idea of doing that now exhausts me!

The point is, for a while I feared I was boring. But I realised that when you know yourself and you’re confident in who you are then you know best. And I don’t feel boring so I won’t let anyone tell me that I am. A lot of the “interesting” things we value in people are superficial anyway. I’m happy and despite all the time I spend doing “boring” things, I am never bored.

Would love to hear your thoughts on growing up in the comments. Do you feel like you’ve changed much? Have your priorities in life shifted a bit like mine? What do you think is an “interesting”/”boring” life?

 

 

 

 

Written By

28 Comments

  1. 100% YASSSS. i’m only 20 but in my second year of uni i’ve realised i give little shits about going out, i’d much rather stay in with the boyf and catch up on bake off with a cup of tea. sometimes i get the ‘omg i’m a student i neeeed to be out every week’ panic but then i remember how cold club queues are and how warm my bed is. 🙂

    1. Same here! I’m a third year student now and going out partying just doesn’t work for me anymore. To be honest I was never a party animal to begin with, but a lot of my friends used to love partying and now they seem to have calmed down and prefer a more quiet but meaning-full life. (Though it could be just the fact that we are in 3rd year and life got too serious all of a sudden :D)

  2. Got to say, this website is amazing. Can’t really even describe why, but it’s just nice to have a, well, nice website. It just feels good to be on, especially considering that it’s a youtubers (although you do blog here tbf) website, which are often just, there. I don’t know how everyone else, with there unlimited budgets, can fall so short in comparison (newspapers looking at you) Well done! Oh, and the article was really good too, gives you something to think about or keep in mind depending on which end of grown up you’re on.

  3. I have felt the same way with my life. I have never much been about going out to clubs/bars, drinking all night and dancing. I have felt a lot more comfortable with people around me that I know and enjoying the night, with deep, meaningful, conversations, playing board games and having a drink or two. Not saying I am much of a introvert, but I like staying at home more often cause I feel comfortable with my life inside. I will go out to places and meet up with people, but it becomes exhausting after a few hours and basically I get bored and head home without much of saying a goodbye to them. I am a quiet person, I enjoy listening to stories, adding a few words to a conversation, but I just sit there, until I grow more accustomed to them, or the conversation is about something I enjoy to talk about and know about. Saying we “grew up” is an understatement to be honest, it more of finally being comfortable with your surroundings and feeling at peace with your current self. Cause after a long day at work, it being Friday night, you are tired, what sounds like a better idea, going out with friends and hanging out, playing board games, or staying in, drinking hot cocoa and reading a good book? That’s up to you, at that moment.

    (P.S. sorry about the long ramble, in a good, talkative mood )

  4. This is so interesting coming from someone who considers themselves and extrovert. I’m 100% introvert and constantly stress that I’m ‘boring’ and not living life the way i should be because i hate drinking and like to go to bed early. It’s really refreshing to see someone publicise that they enjoy this sort of stuff too!

  5. I’m 18 and I already feel like this. WHOOPS. Nah tho it’s nice, I prefer to chill than get smashed on a Friday night out and I’m fine with that. Feels pretty good.

    1. I’m 19 and I sometimes panic over not going out every week or so and even get anxious about it but i’ve managed to calm and accept that i’m not a club type of person and although i’m in uni i can be happy just hanging out with my friends at home, in a café or just wandering wherever we feel like!

  6. I actually think one of the signs of “growing up” is when you realize you aren’t bored. There’s always something to do, even if that something is curling up with a good book. When I was younger, I was bored often and if I was bored, I’d have to rush off to find something to do. And maybe that made me more interesting, but as a grown up adult, I am absolutely never bored. Ever. Even when nothing is going on, I am content to sit in the moment and be with myself.

  7. I’ve always preferred “maturing” over “growing up”, but it’s funny that in most occasions both of these terms come with a slightly, not negative, but rather cynical and defeatist connotation. I wonder if it comes from what our parents used to say back in the day or to kids in general? “Why don’t you grow up, stop acting so immature.” It’s kind of automatically inflicting this association with “growing up” as better than adolescence and then naturally you have these two sides – the pro-growupers and the opposition, which takes “growing up” as “giving up”. I’m not taking either side, but I find it extremely interesting, how everyone views it slightly differently. I am 26 and this topic affects me personally, because I see people around me growing up or the opposite – refusing to grow up. And then I have ones, who already are grown up and settled down and they cast judgement over those, who still enjoy the more student-esque lifestyle. It’s just interesting to study characters this way, how we all go through a certain change from who we were into this new territory.

    In itself, “To live will be an awfully big adventure.” ― J.M. Barrie, Peter Pan

  8. I 100% agree with you! I’m a couple years removed from college (uni) but I never had the urge to party. I have always embraced my laid back and “boring” habits. A typical night for me is relaxing on my couch snuggling with my cat and watching Netflix. It’s not glamourous, or exciting, but I love it that way.

    Over the 2+ years since we relocated, my overall mental image of what I wanted my life to be like drastically changed. I care a million times more about my own quality of life and what truly makes me happy.

    After we graduated from school, my significant other and I moved states (in America) and I was working a job that made me stay until 10 at night. After a year or so, I gradually started to resent having to be out (and at work none the less) that late at night.

    I am also the happiest I have ever been in regards to how I view myself and the life I have built.

  9. Yes! I love everything about this post. As someone who has just started a ‘real’ ‘grown up’ job, this was really refreshing to read. Good job Hannah as always

  10. How do you spell “story of my life”😆. Thanks, Hannah for making me get out of my head and realise that we’re all going through the same interestingly boring shifts. I used to love my 4th tequila shot on a night out. Now…well, I cherish my naps. Naps over tequila, a growing up story😘.

  11. Iv never seen myself as much fun, being introverted iv never liked going out, iv been to a club once, I just stood holding my friends shoes, bag sitting and watching the strobe lights, When in large groups I feel people tend to forget im there. However I’m not a boring person, I just like talking about interesting things, and People say iv a wicked sense of humour, if rather dark. 😀

  12. i guess i’m an introvert so it came easier but i went clubbing probably less than ten times in my whole life, since i was 16 all i wanted was a small group of friend to share my life with, play board games and be sure i can trust them and when i come home i’ll have someone to have fun with, I’ve always been old and boring with the exception that i play video games and watch movies instead of reading book (which i adore but can’t focus on them for the life of me) and actually staying inside i’ve became a much better person than i would going outside in my small and very, VERY bigot town. I mean just to let you understand i took a mental age test when i was ninenteen and it came out that my mental age was 85 LOL.

  13. You have no idea how far this rabbit hole goes.. 🙂 ….Looking forward to your take on all this. You have been launched and for a long time you were in the gun barrel heading to a target (may or may not have been of your choosing, but it s a point of aim nonetheless), but at some point the walls fell away and you can just drift off of the supposed course….not having a clear external guiding force constraining you anymore is one of the last great realizations/benchmarks that heralds independent adulthood. There are others, but like this one you only see them in hindsight.

    At some point you start to see the end target as something more than just some mythological, distant thing and a whole new set of heralds start to appear. Cycle of life…..

  14. I’m going through this at 19! all of last year i was drinking every weekend going crazy at concerts, festivals, and nightclubs. before that for a couple years i was an avid drinker behind my parents back, always sneaking off to parties. i don’t think ill ever not be nostalgic of it, it was crazy and i made so many funny, wild stories. but now that uni is gettin hard i just wanna get straight A’s and i do homework for hours a day, and i’ve been reading tons of books like how i did in elementary school. i only see my friends and girlfriend a couple times a week to watch movies, sit around, maybe get some food, play a board game, etc. And i really like it, i don’t think i could survive a hangover at this point, i just want to better myself and see the people i love. I’ve realized i was trying to prove something before, that i was cool and adventurous, but this is really what makes me content.

  15. I’m 31 years old, and split from my husband 5 months ago. He had an affair with a 23 year old and said he did it because he thought I was boring.

    I’m not boring. I just grew up. I’m exactly as you describe yourself here. Don’t get me wrong, I still love a night out once in a while with ALL the wine and ALL the dancing like an idiot, but just not every night like he does. I’m perfectly happy staying in, cooking a good meal with friends and watching something good on tv. But it makes me so happy to hear someone else proudly say that enjoying simpler things does not make you boring. It just means we grew up a bit!

  16. Hi there. I don’t really think that reading a book or watching tv shows is boring. Books and movies are art. And even if they are about science, or history, or economy, anything really, that’s not boring. History and math and politics and art, everything is interesting. You’ve grown older, your needs have changed. I know, i am almost 25, and i love partying and drinking and smoking and going home when the sun comes up as much as i love staying in and watching a movie. You can love both. You can prefer one over the other and still love both. And your taste may change over what you like at anytime, it has to do with your needs and what makes you happy. Do what makes you happy. You are not boring. Do what fulfills you.

  17. I agree with that. I’m one of those people who is happy just being by myself and working on my interests and passion projects. I never saw society’s standard of an interesting life as “cool” or “interesting.” I’ve always seen it as mundane, boring, and banal. Grow up, but don’t grow old. Continue to improve in mind, body, and spirit and never be complacent or settle for mediocrity. It’ll pay off, promise!

  18. I’ve just graduated and to be honest I’m relieved to finally be free of the pressure to go out all the time. Not my cup of tea, I’d rather chill at home with an actual cup of tea and I don’t care if that’s boring!

  19. In my first year of university, I was almost always drinking, because I assumed that is what I was supposed to do as an eighteen year old released into a brand new city. After a while, I decided to take a step back. I wasn’t getting any lasting fulfilment from drinking, and I just didn’t seem to find it “fun” anymore. And then one my flatmates (who I previously believed was my good friend) called me “boring” one night at dinner. I hadn’t really considered that my lifestyle choices made me any less boring or interesting. I just felt more comfortable. For the next year or so, I was so obsessed with ideas of boring and interesting, because I didn’t want people to think that, at 18/19, I’d turned into some sort of grandma. But a couple of years later, I’m pretty at peace with who I am. I don’t think it’s “boring” not to drink, or club, at university, and I don’t think it’s “boring” to devour a book in a day, or choose a quiet dinner with a friend over a party. That the culture around what makes a university experience “fun” often involves going to bed at 3am and being hungover in your 10 o’clock seminar still bothers me, but I like who I am now, even if some people would consider it boring.
    (In no way insinuating that people who party every day are wrong to do so, but that just isn’t for me.)

  20. When a glass is full of milk, people will say it’s “milk”; when oil is filled, people will say it’s “oil”. When the cup was empty, people looked at the cup and said, “This is a cup”.

    Similarly, when we are fully occupied by wealth or power, it is not really themselves. Sometimes humans are often interested in having everything, but often it’s hard to understand themselves.

  21. This is crazily just what I need to read this week. I’ve been feeling exactly the same and I’m hitting 25 in a few weeks which is only adding to the slight panic of getting older. It’s such a relief to hear that I’m bit the only one who is feeling the same thing. Think you for posting this!

  22. I’ve always been a bit more quiet/solitary, so the idea of a simpler ‘boring’ life isn’t hard for me to contend with now that I’m 27. It makes me appreciate the days and nights out more because they’re nice little changes of pace between my bundles of normal.

  23. I’ve been like this for as long as I can remember. Which is why my friends often call me boring and a granny because I don’t like going out as much as them. I don’t mind too much though – I’m pretty contend with my life as it is. I enjoy being by myself, staying in and such.

  24. My life is divided in two. When I was young, I lived a very introverted life. I loved reading and got a thrill out of doing homework, and I had zero interest in going out and doing the normal things other teens and young adults did. I genuinely didn’t care if people thought I was boring because I was never bored. I literally did not understand the concept of “bored.” How could anyone ever feel bored? What even is that?

    In the past few years since my emotions rebooted, I care far too much what other people think of me. I don’t even know why. It bothers me to think people don’t like me. I can’t reconcile this with the person I was before my thyroid died, either. Why do I care? I have no idea, but I do. I’m having to learn all that emotional development stuff most people learned when they’re 10, but I’m 47. It’s incredibly stressful. I don’t like it.

    I still don’t care if people think I’m boring, but I do care if they don’t like me, which pushes me to at least try to be somewhat more interesting in terms of what others think is interesting. When I try to participate in events, I feel so hopelessly bored. Going out to parties? So boring (and stressful). The company Christmas party is looming next month. I don’t want to go, but I feel like I have to or people will think I’m no fun and all that nonsense. I can’t wait to move past this emotional phase, and get back to where I was 10 years ago when I just didn’t give a f- what others thought of me. I seem to be advancing emotionally about 2 years for every 1 year that actually passes, so I’m at about the emotional maturity level of a normal 20-year-old right now. So I should be fine again emotionally in about 3 years. Can’t wait!

    I’m glad you’ve made it to the other side, Hannah! I hope to get back there again soon.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *