Over dinner one night, a friend was telling me about the ten day silent Vipassana retreat she’d just returned from. “Sounds boring,” I said. “And imagine all THIS” I gestured, "not talking for ten days." She offered back, “They say the personality types that are the least likely to meditate are the ones who could benefit the most from it.”
I signed up for it on the spot.
“Besides,” she said, “even if it’s boring, it’s only ten days.”
Fast forward to me, meditating for the first time in my life, on day four of the retreat. Days one through three were exciting, challenging, transformative. Day four however, was when I started to feel antsy. Obviously she doesn’t remember how long ten days is, I thought to myself.
But I stuck with it. I appreciated the calm. The routine. The action I was taking to slow down, cherish every little moment, feel cool with myself for the first time in a long time.
On the tenth day, we could finally speak to the other 40 people taking the course. I talked for eight straight hours.
I realized that I was the storyteller. I was the one who had processed the experience and could explain it in an empathic and communal way. After ten days of solitude, the smiles and laughter around me were deeply meaningful. I made lifelong friends from that retreat.
It reignited my love for writing, and lifted my confidence when it comes to public speaking.
And I haven’t felt bored since.