She has money. Not great wealth but enough. She covers all her bills and has spare for leisure. She can afford to eat out, visit friends, go shopping on a whim, and buy nice things for her home. But she's not happy. She lives alone, so maybe loneliness is part of it, but I think most of it is attitude.
In the course of the conversation, she was given lots of suggestions about things that would enrich her life, and she simply dismissed them all as not interesting, or pointless. There comes a point when you just can't help a person, and I didn't really bother. I've come across people like this before.
Before I met Martin I had a boyfriend with a mother like that. I remember sitting in her kitchen trying to be polite and make conversation, and somehow the topic of what we do in our spare time came up. And she said these exact words "I don't really enjoy doing anything". I didn't know what to say, so I changed the subject, but as you can see, it stayed with me. It rocked me to the core actually.
I'm one of those people with too many interests. I can't fit them all in. There aren't enough hours in the day to do all the things I love doing, and I have to prioritize. But bored? Oh no. I can be bored, of course, I just know what bores me and I avoid it like the plague.
I'm sure you've met bored teenagers. I consider that a sad thing, so I've always made sure mine don't get bored. If they say they're bored, or even if they look bored, I give them something to do. As this usually involves chores they hate, they make a great deal of effort to always be very busy doing something, even if it's just reading a book.
One of the things I teach my kids is to get interested in things that last. Doesn't matter what it is, so long as it's not temporary. Because one day you'll be old and have time on your hands, and life will be better if you have long-standing passions. Everything else will come and go, but they won't.
I assume somebody gave me that advice when I was young, I don't remember, but I know the happiest people I've known, right through my life, were busy people. Busy doing whatever it is that makes them happy.
However, I hate the word hobby. I really do. It sounds like something that comes in a box. When somebody says "I need a hobby" I think to myself, no, you need an attitude change. A hobby is sort of separate, and not considered that important. It's not a REAL thing to do with your time. You've even heard "it's JUST a hobby".
No, I like the word passion, because it connotes something really important to you. The thing about a passion is that it can be your career if you choose. Doesn't get relegated to Sunday afternoons. Or at least it can be something given a great level of importance, something you identify with. Even if you have a less than stellar job and don't wish to think of yourself as that job, a passion can take its place. "I work in retail, I am a guitarist".
Even if all you do is collect pottery chickens, if you put enough love into it, it can be a passion.
There's this wonderful piece Stephen Fry did about finding the meaning of life:
He did this as a humanism project, but I see no reason why it can't be applied to people who follow a religion too. For some, perhaps, their passion is their religion, and if that is enough, then power to them.
But I find as many if not more bored, miserable, and negative religious people as I do non-religious. Religion is not a ticket to happiness. It's still down to individual attitude and what you fill your life with.
Let's go back to the lady I began with. I had only one question for her, and you may think it's a foolish question, but I thought it was worth asking.
"Do you want to be happy?"
After all, nobody can force you to be. If you prefer to stay miserable, that's your absolute prerogative.
It even applies if it's just a bit of misery, now and again.
If you find that you just CAN'T be happy, and you want to be, then there are all sorts of options available to you, but if you have just chosen not to be, I don't think I can help you.
As for her, she didn't reply.