Great rule to live by, because it works in two ways:
- Stop hanging out with boring people
- Stop making other people feel bored
Adults tend to be worse at the first one. We hang around certain people out of habit and comfort, even if the relationship isn’t much fun anymore. But we’re pretty tuned into whether other people are enjoying the story we’re telling.
Kids tend to be worse at the second one. They haven’t figured out the social cues for detecting boredom, hence long conversations about their favorite reptiles and “come watch me play Minecraft!” But when someone else is boring them, they’re outta there.
Social anxiety makes both of them harder. We’re always worried that we’re boring people, even if we’re not. And we’re always worried about people hating us, which makes it tough to cut boring people out.