Do you sometimes feel like you’re a boring person? Like you don’t have anything interesting to say, and no one wants to be around you? If so, you’re not alone. Many people find it difficult to come across as exciting or interesting.
If you’re worried that you might be a boring person, you’ve come to the right place.
Here are signs to look out for, along with some ways to spice up your life and make yourself more interesting:
Hephzibah Kaplan, RATh, B.Ed
Director, London Art Therapy Centre | Author, “Almost Happy: Pushing Your Buttons with Reverse Psychology“
People may want to escape the “conversation”
A boring person does not always realize they are boring because they are so deeply interested in their own subjects and often themselves too. Therefore they assume that what is of interest to them is obviously and intrinsically of interest to others.
There is the familiar drone that one hears when someone is going on and on and on about their favorite topic without realizing that the listener is no longer listening but has switched off — or perhaps switched on their phone in order to escape the “conversation.”
Of course less of a conversation but more of talking. Does it make you feel like a blank wall or perhaps a dustbin for their interminable monotony? Does the talker even notice or realize what is going on?
As mental health professionals, we might even pathologize the bore with possible diagnoses such as narcissism (there are four different types), self-centredness, and even Asperger’s Syndrome, but we can also think about the less considered diagnoses of poor self-esteem and low confidence.
When sharing your specialist subjects such as sports, politics, or cosmetics, there may be more opinion and information than relatedness or connection to the listeners.
Do you notice the person you are talking to? Sorry, I mean to look at you with interest and respond with curious questions and eager anticipation to hear more.
People may bring another person into the conversation to liven it up
They don’t ask questions but start talking about themselves to counter the wave of never-ending dribble you are spouting.
- They say they are tired.
- They look at their phones.
- They find excuses to get away.
- They are empire-building — looking over your shoulder for a more interesting person to talk to.
If you are a bore, how do you curb this practice?
Check yourself in the mirror before you go out
Let’s start with checking yourself in the mirror before you go out. Is there anything interesting or quirky about your look or attire that may attract, i.e., not repel interest?
We judge people on what they look like far more than what they say.
Your clothing or accessories may invite curiosity, so expressing a bit of flair or imagination would be a good start, albeit certainly not enough.
Your conversation has to engage someone, but not for too long. Keep them hanging on, and want to see you again to hear more!
Four factors will make a difference:
Being open to arguments and alternative opinions to your own. Are you able to engage with views opposite to your own without being argumentative or nasty?
Thoughtfulness and consideration of the views, even prejudices of others, can make for an interesting conversation.
Related: How to Be Open Minded
Share your expertise or competence
Can you share your know-how with someone who is genuinely interested in learning about your subject? I once found myself at a party with a boring person who told me he was a lift engineer.
I knew nothing about lifts, but as I began to ask questions about lift maintenance, design and capacity, I found this person less boring. I learned a lesson in inquiry as a process to connect with another despite judgment.
Be friendly with other people
If you can smile confidently at another person without looking too needy, your warmth may shine through. Even if you have rotten teeth (and no halitosis), if you project friendliness and kindness, this may soften the other person to stay talking to you.
Have a chat about the things you found funny
Humor is a great connector between people.
- Can you be playful, fun, or amusing without being a jerk?
- Can you laugh at situations with heart?
- Are you self-deprecating and can laugh at the parts of yourself that may be holding you back?
Related: How to Be Funny?
While we may not laugh at the same things, there is always a discussion about humor. If you are not the funny type, you can have a chat about which films you found funny until you find the mutual interests that you share and can connect with.
You are a boring person if you only talk about what interests you without noticing the numbing, dreary impact you have on others. Expand your views and interests to be less boring.
As Albert Einstein said, “I have no special talent. I am only passionately curious.”
Colleen Wenner-Foy, MA. LCMHC-S, LPC, MCAP
Licensed Clinical Mental Health Counselor | Founder and Clinical Director, New Heights Counseling and Consulting LLC
You fear rejection
You may use rejection as a way to defend yourself against feeling rejected by someone else. And if you reject others, then they will reject you too.
In addition, when you feel rejected or hurt, your body releases stress hormones that can make it harder for you to physically connect with other people — being seen as boring is a self-fulfilled prophecy.
Accept that rejection happens, acknowledge your feelings, learn from the experience and move on with your life. You’ll enjoy life more when you’re ready to open up to others.
You fear failure
Failure can be scary, but if you’re afraid of failing, you might avoid trying new things and activities. You may even withdraw from friends and family because they don’t understand why you aren’t doing well.
Others will see you as disinterested or uninteresting and move on without investing time with you.
Stretch yourself and try something new. If you fail, just keep going until you succeed. People will be impressed by your courage and will admire you for it.
Related: Overcoming Fear of Failure
You avoid deeper connections with people
When you choose not to connect with others on a deeper level of connection, you will be seen by others as being superficial and emotionally unavailable. This makes you appear cold and distant, which leads to people avoiding you.
Work on reaching out to people who are close to you. Take an interest in who they are and what they are doing. They’ll appreciate that you care about them and want you around them more.
You don’t feel motivated
Lack of motivation, no spontaneity. If you don’t feel motivated, others will think you’re not interested in doing anything. They may even start avoiding you, assuming you’re not going to be fun to hang out with.
Your life comes across as being predictable and dull. It’s hard to be spontaneous and exciting when you don’t want to go anywhere or do anything.
Ask yourself what you want out of life and which direction you’d prefer to travel. Set some specific short-term and long-term objectives for yourself. Seek help and work towards achieving them.
You have low self-esteem
Low self-esteem can definitely lead to exhibiting boring behavior, which causes others to question whether you have any interest in them. You may find it difficult to express yourself and struggle to ask questions and engage in conversation.
Build up your self-esteem by working on improving your social skills. Talk to people more often and practice asking questions. Take small steps towards building your self-esteem by complimenting yourself. Be your own cheerleader!
You lack confidence
If you have low self-confidence, you tend to focus on the negative of life rather than what you do have. You may find it challenging to express emotions such as happiness, joy, excitement, etc. Because of this, others may see you as someone who doesn’t enjoy life and is uninteresting.
Seek to improve your confidence and self-image by learning to be more assertive and positive. Accept yourself for who you are, including your flaws but just as importantly, accept your strengths too.
You are uninterested and uninspired with what you are doing and experiencing
Being a boring person is about others’ experiences with us. They struggle to find anything interesting in what we are doing or what we have to say. In some cases, the judgment that we are boring lies with them.
Perhaps they are self-centered and don’t really care, or perhaps they don’t have the will or the skill to ask the type of questions that would elicit an interesting response from us.
If we turn the finger around, however, it’s a wise self-reflection that would lead us to determine whether we are bored with our life. If we are uninterested and uninspired with what we are doing and experiencing, it is highly likely that others would find us quite boring to be around.
If we’ve made the self-judgment that we have become boring to ourselves and others, intentional action is required, and promptly.
Some key considerations in the action department might be:
- What new knowledge or skill would we enjoy learning? How could we pursue it?
- Is there some service we could offer to someone new? How could we make it more challenging and exciting? Does our community need us to contribute our time?
- What is our spiritual state? Is there some new spiritual path or religion to consider studying? Is there some new spiritual meditation practice we could adopt?
- Is our diet tasteless and plain? Is there a new spice to add or some new recipes or food to try?
- Has our exercise fallen into a rut? Where can we go to gain fitness but in a new environment?
- Are there interesting friends or relatives that we have lost touch with, and it would energize us to spend time with them? Are there stories they want to tell us that is new to us?
- Are we pursuing a couple’s relationship that prompts us to laugh and learn?
- Are we growing our character strengths and striving intentionally to be more truthful, flexible, or creative?
Tedious repetition, dull experiences, and lack of growth lead us to become bored and boring.
As we creatively look for experiences that bring us joy and that spark vitality inside of us instead, we can become interested in life again and more interesting to others.
Our conversations become animated, and we are enthusiastic about sharing what new is happening in our lives.
Dr. Rosmy Barrios
MD and Medical Advisor, Health Reporter
If your loved ones no longer invite you to do things together
If your loved ones no longer invite you to do things together because they are tired of being turned down. Let’s say all your friends suggest some fun activity, like going to a new restaurant, going for a bike ride, watching an interesting movie, or something similar.
If you are the kind of person who is hard to please and often turns down such invitations, you can become very boring in your friends’ eyes. And this is not about refusing to spend time because of work, fatigue, or other plans.
This is about answering:
- “Nah, I’m not interested.”
- “That sounds stupid.”
- “Oh, I’m definitely not going to do this.”
If you’re killing your friends’ plans to have fun with your negativity, don’t be surprised if they isolate themselves from you and no longer offer to do so many things together.
Relationship Expert, Texas Divorce Laws
There’s nothing wrong with a person being boring. However, people might not prefer boring people as they suck out their energy and make others feel drained.
So it’s essential to know if you have the same effect on people, and if so, you can work on improving them. Here are signs that may indicate that you’re boring.
You are predictable
It’s easy to foresee boring individuals. They overuse outdated clichés. They tend to agree too quickly and frequently and hardly ever voice their strong opinions.
Bores can occasionally be overly concerned; they come out as too pleasant, continually praising others.
Your talks are superficial and meaningless
The boring avoids having in-depth conversations. Instead, the dull person talks excessively or keeps saying the same thing repeatedly while discussing inconsequential topics like the weather.
If you’re someone who finds themselves doing that, you’re unfortunately boring.
You are self-centered and whiny
Boring people only talk about themselves and don’t care much about others. The self-centered boring speaks for excessive time, is verbose, and takes an eternity to make a point while presenting a narrative.
Additionally, boring people are hesitant to try new things. Whenever you try to bring up something constructive, they complain nonstop and keep coming up with justifications.
If you find yourself doing any of the things above, then I hate to break it to you, but you’re boring, my friend.
Chief People and Operations Officer, Checkr, Inc.
To be boring means to be uninteresting, dull, or tiresome. They are often lacking in excitement and can be repetitive.
While I never want to be the life of the party, I want to ensure that I remain inspiring, especially since I handle the people teams in the company.
Here are some signs that you might be a boring person:
You don’t have any hobbies
Boring people often don’t have any hobbies or interests outside of work. This lack of passion can make them seem one-dimensional and uninteresting.
You avoid new experiences
Boring people are often afraid of trying new things. They stick to what they know and are uncomfortable with change. This limited perspective can make them seem closed-minded and dull.
Boring people are often very predictable. They like to stick to their routines and don’t like surprises.
You have trouble carrying on a conversation
Boring people often have trouble carrying on a conversation. They might not have anything interesting to say, or they might just drone on and on about topics that no one else cares about.
Either way, it can be hard to carry on a conversation with a boring person.
You don’t have any strong opinions
Boring people often don’t have any strong opinions on anything. They are wishy-washy and avoid taking a stand on anything. This lack of conviction can make them seem indecisive and lacking in passion.
Related: How to Stop Being Indecisive
You’re not very curious
Boring people are not curious about the world around them. They don’t ask questions or try to learn new things. Curiosity is what drives us to have new experiences and learn new things. Without it, we can become stagnant and bored with life.
Molecular Biotechnology Student | Founder, Fitness Equipped
It can be tough to tell if you’re a boring person. After all, you’re the only one who knows what makes you interesting (or not). However, there are a few surefire ways to find out if you’re a bore.
Ask your friends and family
Firstly, ask your friends and family. They’ll likely be more than happy to share their honest opinion on whether or not you’re an interesting person.
Look at your hobbies and interests
Another way to find out is to look at your hobbies and interests. Do they tend to be pretty mundane? If so, that’s a good indication that you might be a bit on the dull side.
Consider your conversations
Finally, consider your conversations. Are they usually pretty one-sided? Do you find yourself doing most of the talking? If so, that’s another sign that you might need to work on being more engaging.
How can you become more interesting?
Branch out and explore new things
Well, it takes some effort, but it’s definitely possible. Start by branching out and exploring new things. Learn about different cultures and try out various activities. Talk to people from different walks of life.
The more experience you gain, the more interesting you’ll become.
Pay attention to your body language and conversation skills
Also, make sure to pay attention to your body language and conversation skills. Be more animated when you speak, and ask leading questions to get your conversations flowing.
By doing these things, you’ll make yourself more engaging and interesting to others. With a little effort, you can definitely make yourself more interesting.
Owner and Author, Adventuring Dreamers Blog
You live your life inauthentically
Humans are social creatures, so it is natural to want to be liked by others. The problem comes when you change yourself in order for others to like you more.
If you are curating your personality around what you think others will like, it becomes impossible for anyone to get to know you on a deeper level.
While you might think you are doing your social life a favor by acting how you think others want you to, people will be able to tell if you are inauthentic. If you’re hiding who you truly are, you will come off as superficial, self-centered, fake, and, of course, boring.
Acting how you think others will want you to act in order to be liked is also exhausting.
Instead of enjoying your time around other people, you spend too much time trying to predict how they want you to act. It is much better to be your authentic self.
Even if someone doesn’t like who you truly are, when you are your authentic self, you will be able to find the right people — the ones who you’re meant to be around.
Related: How to Be True to Yourself
Head of Growth, Yotta
When your conversations are a bit on the lengthy side
When your conversations, messages, and replies are a bit on the lengthy side, it’s probably a sign that you’re too boring.
Have you noticed that when you’re talking to someone, they’re trying to walk away from you? They’re nodding their head, but they’re walking toward a door. That’s the kind of body language you need to pick up on.
Cut your conversations shorter, and don’t ramble as much. The less you say, the more people will pay attention to you.
People often give signals to notify someone that they want a conversation to end. They don’t want to be rude and walk away or tell you to stop talking, so they tell you through body language. Pick up on those tells.
- Wander away from you.
- Stop making eye contact.
- Stop making open-ended statements.
- Start saying to you more often, “I’ve got to get going” or “I have to get back to work.”
Shorter, pithier conversations are your best bet. Try to work on being more succinct. People can evolve into better conversationalists. It just takes patience and self-awareness.
CEO, Hello Music Theory
You are pessimistic about everything
I find someone boring when they are pessimistic about everything all the time. They just can’t try to find positivity in any event. These people always see the worse and bad parts or assume that the event is going to be bad.
If you are this type of person, then there are possibilities that people may find you boring.
The reason why you are being pessimistic is probably that you don’t want to get involved in that event or be a part of a specific situation. And so you try to find the bad and worse things, just as an excuse to avoid participating in the event.
By doing this, you make the people around you tired of you and turn their mood off. And this is the reason why your friends might not want to involve you in anything.
Sometimes, being pessimistic turns out to be right. But being one all the time is not an ideal thing to do.
Related: How to Stop Being Pessimistic
You don’t laugh enough
For me, a fool-indicator of a boring person is if they don’t laugh as much as other people in a group setting.
Groups of friends often laugh more than usual to match each other’s energy unconsciously, but if you find that you’re immune to the fun, you’re probably a boring person!
You can’t carry on good conversations
People are perceived as boring when they can’t carry on good conversations.
Boring people often slide into nodding, hmmm-ing, or just smiling at interesting stories because they feel intimidated by the experience or don’t have anything interesting to add to the topic, thus unwillingly killing the flow of conversations.
Frequently Asked Questions
Is it okay to be a little boring?
Absolutely! It’s impossible to be the life of the party all the time, and everyone has their off days. It’s important to stay true to yourself and not try to be someone you’re not.
However, if you want to connect with others and build meaningful relationships, it’s important to put yourself out there and make an effort to be engaging.
Is it okay to be a quiet person?
Absolutely! Being quiet or introverted doesn’t automatically make you a boring person. It depends on how you interact with others and contribute to conversations.
Some people would rather listen than talk, and that’s perfectly fine. The most important thing is that you participate in the conversation and are present, even if you’re not talking most of the time.
Can being nervous or anxious make me come off as boring?
It’s possible. When we’re nervous or anxious, we often become more reserved and are less willing to take risks or speak our minds. This can make us seem uninterested or disengaged in social situations.
However, it’s important to remember that everyone is nervous at times and that it’s okay to take your time and engage in conversation. If you’re struggling with anxiety, you should talk to a therapist or counselor to learn coping strategies.
Is it possible to be too interesting or engaging?
While it’s important to participate and contribute to conversations, it’s also important to be mindful of others and not dominate the discussion. If you find that you’re always the center of attention or people are overwhelmed by your energy or enthusiasm, take a step back and let others have their say.
Remember that conversations are mutual, and it’s important to give others space to share their thoughts and opinions.
What if I don’t enjoy socializing or don’t feel like putting in the effort to be more engaging?
It’s okay to have different preferences and personality traits when socializing. If you don’t enjoy socializing or don’t want to put in the effort to be more engaging, that’s your choice.
However, it’s important to remember that building strong social connections can have a positive impact on our mental health and well-being.
Even if you don’t like socializing, it’s worthwhile to cultivate relationships with the people in your life. This can be as simple as meeting up with friends and family from time to time or attending social events occasionally.
Are there situations where it’s okay to be boring?
Yes, there are situations where it’s perfectly okay to be quiet or reserved. For example, if you’re in a professional setting or attending a serious event, it’s usually best to be formal and reserved.
It’s also okay to take some time for yourself and not feel like you have to be “on” all the time. The key is to be mindful of the situation and adjust your behavior accordingly.
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