Boredom and bikes

I haven’t written recently mainly because I haven’t had too much to write about. No naval gazing or soul searching to speak of and, much like the rest of the world, opportunities to head out and find excitement and interest are few and far between. Work occupies most of my weekdays and my weekends consist of house cleaning, reading, watching tv and not much else. I’m not complaining but it is a strange kind of existence.

I have been thinking that I need a new focus. Something outside of work and something that takes me outside and away from my bed, sofa and iPad. I’d love to have a dog but I need to be realistic about that. Though I am working from home quite a lot right now, that won’t always be the case and the rest of the family are out everyday. It seems that the world and his wife are all getting dogs. Every second conversation I have with someone they tell me they are about to have a new puppy. It is definitely on my bucket list but not for a good few years yet. I have to shelve that one for now.

So, it was back to the drawing board and I hatched a new plan. Last week I bought a new bike. It arrives in a couple of weeks (yes it is the bike in the photo) and it cost me more than I ever dreamt I’d spend on a bike. I’m not big into cycling but I want a hobby that I am able to do on my own as well as with my family. My Dad also adores cycling and I’m hoping it is an interest we can share and participate in together, even with the strictest of restrictions in place. I’m excited for it to arrive and hoping it lifts me out of my ‘meh’ mood. I used to run a few times a week but that has fizzled out. I still practice yoga every day and I am loving it but I need something more. I can feel boredom creeping in and for me boredom is very dangerous. It brings with it risks to my mental health, it triggers unhelpful behaviours and negative thoughts and is generally a state of being that I need to prevent and avoid.

I have also picked up my cross stitch again. I have such a complicated piece going on that mistakes are all too easy to make. Unpicking is not fun but when I hit my flow I find it really quite relaxing. It keeps me from reaching for the wine so that’s got to be positive. I started the current project last Christmas, intending it for a baby’s christening present in February. It’ll be about ready for her 18th birthday by the time I’m finished. It’s the thought that counts I guess.

Slowly but surely …

Does anyone else struggle with boredom? It isn’t that I find it tricky to be in my own company. Quite the opposite. I do worry however that I could become too introverted and lock myself away within a virtual world. I am aware that whilst boredom is not good for me, I am becoming less and less motivated to engage in physical ‘in person’ social contact. I noticed that was happening before the pandemic hit us. Removing alcohol removed my desire to mix and socialise. Or maybe it just removed my desire to mix and socialise with others who are drinking. I don’t really know. Something has altered within though and I need to be careful it doesn’t lead to unhealthy levels of solitude and eventually loneliness and isolation. I’m am always grateful I have this blog and my word press friends. This community helps me connect and engage which is so important, especially in the current climate. And who knows, in a few weeks you might see me whizzing around on my bike. Laura Trott … eat your heart out. 😊

Claire x

36 thoughts on “Boredom and bikes”

  1. So lovely to read an update from you. Congratulations on the bike, I keep thinking about getting one but havent rode for years. I hope you get many years of enjoyment out of it ♡
    I’ve been cross stitching an advent calendar and find it relaxing. It’s nowhere near as good as yours but it’s nice to get lost in thoughts whilst doing. A way of mindfulness I suppose xxx

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    1. I started small with cross stitching years ago. Didn’t do any for years and then picked it up again a little while ago. This is the most complicated I have done and it takes me ages. Good to do though. I’m excited about my bike. Fingers crossed it is something I really enjoy xxx

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      1. What a nice image! Not sure it will be quite like that. More like me screaming because I’m going to fast and about to fall off 😂😂 xxx

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  2. Hey Claire 🙂 I can relate to the dangers of boredom. I often spend an unhealthy amount of time sat at my PC. It’s fine if I’m actively engaged in something meaningful, but if I’m just killing time then I risk my mental health going downhill fast. And I get tempted to eat from boredom too, which is counter productive. This is where I find a bit of intuition is handy… I try to find something which feels meaningful and latch onto it. Getting out on your bike will help too, I’m sure. My level of sociability waxes and wanes; I try not to set a standard for myself and just go with the flow. I do love going to visit my elderly neighbours for a catch up though.

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  3. When we got our first dog, Charlie, we often left him on his own for 8+ hours in the working day. With hindsight that was deeply unfair, but we didn’t know better at the time. So your caution is justified.

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  4. Love, love, love the bike! Frick yah! Whoop whoop whoop. Okay can you tell I’m excited for you, Claire? I’ve been riding my mountain bike about twice a week and it’s total therapy. Being out in the woods and kicking my ass trying to get up hills is the right on medicine for me. Enjoy and congrats 🎈

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    1. You have spurred me on Dwight. I am excited too. The bike has gravel tyres so I can ride roads and trails too. Hopefully I will have lots of adventures to post about. Thanks for your enthusiasm… it’s catching 😊😊🤗🤗

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  5. The cross stitch looks fabulous!

    I’m basically a hermit and manage to keep myself occupied virtually all day long. I don’t know about the climate where you are, but we’re entering all-rain-all-the-time season here, which makes biking rather unpleasant.

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    1. Yep, it’s going to be rainy and cold but I’ll persevere. I used to run on all weathers. When we head into spring I’ll have more fun with it hopefully.

      Ah … thanks for the cross stitch praise. I think I was over ambitious when I took it on but it’s getting there slowly. The rabbit is slightly wonky but that’s ok I think.

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  6. YAY to the bike!!! I think it’s a wonderful idea and I am truly in awe of anyone who is willing to go outside from the October-April months for a bike ride 🙂 I agree with you on the negative cycle of boredom and isolation. It’s hard though, given the current situation. So yes, a new hobby or project is key, I think, if a puppy is off the table (also so much respect for the cross-stitching ! The best I can do it badly knit a vaguely rectangular thing that only the kindest of people would call a scarf). Please know that you are not alone and have wordpress friends who are sending love from afar! Maybe it’s a wonderful exercise for us to beat the boredom and loneliness with our own resources (i.e. not with alcohol). Maybe it’ll be a great learning experience. Anyway, sending big bug hugs and looking to hear all about the biking! xxx anne ❤ PS. Now I want a puppy!

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    1. You and I will get puppies one day Anne, it’s in our future I can tell. 😉
      Yep, the biking will be cold and wet but I’ll do what I can and then look forward to the spring when I can really pick up the pace with it. I have to get myself out … staying in the house every day will drive me nutty by Xmas! Thanks for the hugs 🤗 sending them back to you. Hope you are doing ok. Xxx❤️❤️

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      1. I just read your post and commented. Yoga, breathe, keep those positive thought going and use the anxiety. It’s there for a reason sometimes and when managed can help us achieve our best. You will be awesome and I hope you do manage to enjoy it a little. Your hard work will be recognised and that is such an amazing achievement. Sending luck and love across to France xxx

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  7. Very cool on that bike! I so wish I could join you!!! 🚲 It’s fall here and today would be a great biking day however soon the snow will be coming. I love the cross stitch piece your working on and yes, that sure is a complicated one! Looks awesome! I grew up doing cross stitch but haven’t done it in quite awhile!
    I have my one friend I socialize with. She’s the one I had for dinner last night. We see each other about every couple months. That seems to fill the void for me. I am thankful for that as I’d be a total hermit if not. Just no desire to go and do things socially.
    Well I’m off to do some bathroom painting! Thinking of you! ❤️

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    1. Ah thanks 😊 It is a pretty cool bike and I’ll keep going as long as I can stand the cold and damp. Then it might be a spring hobby 😂. I only just took up cross stitch again recently. I used to do it over 30 years ago and I’ve thoroughly enjoyed revisiting it. Give it a go. It’s tough when you know you should mix more but don’t have the motivation. Thanks for thinking of me. Good luck with the painting ❤️❤️

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  8. A new bike! How exciting! Yes, I struggle with the boredom, too. I tend to be hermit-like these days, but I need to make more of an effort. I’ve started planning more outings for the weekends to come, so we will see how that goes! Effort on that front seems to come and go, though. Enjoy your biking! 🤗

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    1. Hey. I like not doing too much or being too busy but there is a risk that the effort becomes too much and then no plans are made. That’s not good for me. We went out today. Had lunch and walked about a little. It was good to get the boys out and do something we use to do. Then I walked 3 miles and now I’m about to take a bath and read. I just need to have some plans some weekends and ensure I’m not sitting at my desk, on my laptop every weekday without a break. Glad you are making plans. ❤️💕❤️

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  9. A hobby is a great thing.
    I have also had a bit of boredom recently. 2 nights this week I went to 2 yoga classes – both vinyasa flow followed by yin. It got me out of the house for a couple of hours and off social media.

    I do love to read. I have a stack of books. I try to have a bath every night to fill up time and read a bit.

    It is a skill to just be. Some days I like it. Some days I’m jittery. I guess so is life.

    Anne

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    1. That’s helps Anne. I too find some days are fine and then others I am ansty. I love my baths and I am going to run one right now.

      I enjoy vinyasa flows … what is yin? I am still learning about yoga and maybe I could read up more about it. I am loving it I must say but have not yet been to a group class. I just do online ones at home. X

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  10. Love the bike Claire and trips out should ease the boredom a bit I’m sure. I think this second wave and restrictions are going to cause problems of boredom, hardship and mental anguish for a great many people. Anything that can help alleviate that is to be welcomed. Don’t cycle and cross stitch at the same time though 😉 xX

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    1. I’ll will remember that advice Jim. No cross stitch cycling attempts. Got it! I agree, I think this week has been tough to take for many in the UK. Facing up to the reality that we are heading back to square one and maybe worse is hard. I worry for my boys and that there is no end in sight. Just got to keep taking one day at a time I suppose. Make the most of what we can do and believe that it will ease eventually. Xx

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  11. I’m glad you got the bike! I think that’s an awesome idea. I too feel like this season has brought out my antisocial tendencies. Having to go out of the house to work this week will cure some of that for me. It’s like the less you have to face the world the more you want to hide away in the comfort of your home. Like Dwight mentioned, I think biking is great for your mental health too! I looking forward to hearing stories of adventure! 💕

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    1. I agree, you kind of get out of the habit don’t you? I have been going into work once or twice a week but recently not at all which has impacted I think. I am going to try to get in at least once a week from now on as it does force me to stop hiding. Hope your return into the workplace goes well Collette. 💕💕

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