July is National Anti-Boredom Month. How did the seventh month of the year earn this dubious honor? In 1984, writer and PR professional Alan Caruba founded the Boring Institute as a joke while watching that year’s Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade. He put out a press release describing the parade as boring, and even claimed the parade broadcast was merely a videotape replayed every year. Caruba, who passed away in 2015, created a variety of “boring” lists, including Most Boring Celebrities, and Most Boring Films.
But how did July make his list? June marks the beginning of summer break for many kids, so it has an excitement about it. By August, everyone’s gearing up for a new school year. But July is smack dab in the middle of the long, hot season. And after the Fourth of July, there’s not much on the horizon.
But Caruba went from joking about boredom to advocating ways to overcome it. That’s why July is National Anti-Boredom Month. We agree that focusing on creating fun is a much better use of time and energy than complaining that there’s nothing to do. So, here are five fun things to try this month.
Be a Tourist in Your Own Town
There’s something unique about every city or town in the country. Check out some of your local museums, historical buildings and state parks. Go sightseeing on a Segway or bicycle tour. Or, hit up some of your city’s food-tasting events: This is a great — and inexpensive — way to experience all the great food your city offers, and you may find a new favorite restaurant or a recipe to try at home.
Study a Foreign Language
The U.S. is home to more than 350 languages. Did you know that many people learn English by watching American TV shows? Try watching foreign-language shows, then pausing the program to repeat what was said. See if you can keep up with the plot without using translation subtitles.
Develop a New Skill
Whether you live in a house or an apartment, you can learn how to plant flowers or vegetables. Look for community gardens in your area. Instead of spending money on artwork, sketch or paint your own. Take a self-defense class. Learn to play chess. You’ll never be bored when you’re learning something new.
Volunteer Your Time
One way to avoid boredom is to focus your attention on someone else. Volunteer to cut your neighbor’s lawn or run errands for an elderly neighbor. Read at a nursing home, or gather supplies for a local homeless shelter. Put your special skills to work and teach others how to paint, garden, play a sport or cook.
Celebrate With Tea or Coffee
You can also whip up a batch of delicious Community® Porch Breeze™ tea to share with your neighbors. Invite everyone over to sit on your porch and refresh after gardening or yard work.
Or, experiment by making your own latte: Brew two cups of coffee and pour 2/3 of a cup of milk into a jar with a lid. Shake the jar for about a minute, then remove the lid and microwave the jar for 30 seconds. Finally, pour your coffee into a mug, then spoon the frothed milk over it.