Quarantining A Lonely Seven: Part I
There are exactly two things in life that I try to avoid more than any other thing: Boredom and loneliness (cue Britney Spears).
Amidst the recent COVID-19 pandemic and its subsequent requirement of self-quarantining, I have found myself confined into the four walls of my apartment with those two most distasteful emotions. My heart yearns to be doing something worthwhile.
I desire purpose.
Sure, there are plenty of things to do. I could clean my apartment (Lord knows it needs it). I could finish writing my book. I could watch TV. Play video games. Stare at the blank page before me. Open up a dirty window. Let the sun illuminate the words that I cannot find. And to my credit, I have tried almost all of those tasks. Nevertheless, boredom and loneliness still creep their way into my consciousness. How does someone like me fight that? How does anyone fight that? We all struggle with these emotions. They can be found in every nook and corner of your personal biography. They’re very hard to fight. They’re very hard to fight because they know you so well. They know you so well because they let you know them so well.
Boredom and loneliness are not emotions you decide to have. They are not emotions that are simply brought upon us like a coronavirus (ooooo he really went there). They are the result of an action, or the lack thereof. The way I see it, you’re either running toward something, or you’re running away from something. And when you run away, boredom and loneliness can be the result of the action, and you’ve lost purpose. Of course you’re going to say “But, Pete, how do you even know we’re running from something,” or “Pete, what could we possibly be running from and also you’re really cool and not weird?” Well, my friend, on top of you being perfectly right about me being cool, you also bring up a very good point.
What are you running from?
I don’t know what you’re running from. I’m not your Holy Spirit, nor am I your Jiminy Cricket. I am simply a very real individual, with a very real purpose, and very real problems. And one very good thing about being very real, is I know what I am running from, and I hope that can help you.
I am a "seven" on the Enneagram, and I fear emotion. I’m not a "one" who disregards their feelings at will, I’m not a "four" or an "eight" who place more weight into certain emotions at certain times. I have a near debilitating fear of feelings. Sevens like to be happy. Always doing something new and exciting. And we can’t let those pesky little feelings get in the way of that. I often find myself in a sort of eternal phase trying to bury my feelings, both good and bad, with time-consuming, useless activities. The result is always the same. Boredom and loneliness.
This verse has meant a lot to me lately. I’ve been in a bit of a rough spot, and I often find myself running to things in order to escape something that isn’t even chasing me. I am afraid to truly know who I am. I tend to discount my feelings in the moment to make myself better, and often lose myself in the process. It's okay to want to be happy. It’s okay to not want to be sad. It’s not, however, okay to run. God is bold, and he gave you boldness. So be bold or you may end up losing yourself, and your purpose.
What are you running from?
See you in Part II.