Home / Relationships /

How to Not Be a Boring Person

I got an email from a reader the other day. It said, “Hey Ryan, how can I not be boring any longer? I feel like I’m super boring, and people don’t want to hang out with me because of it.” Well, this is a tough question… Are you actually boring?

The desire to be an interesting person or an attractive person can be quite daunting in today’s world. The reality is that many of our advancements in life come from our improvement of social skills. From influencing others around us at work to finding a compatible mate or partner.

Before you go ahead and deem yourself boring

There’s something pretty major to consider here… Are you actually boring or are you hanging around the right type of people?

According to recent studies about 9.1% of the population in the United States suffers from some type of personality disorder.

Think about this… That means that many of us are accustomed to changing the way that we act or who we are depending on the types of people that we are around.

For example, do you read a lot of books? If you do, for some people that might be boring. And for others, that might be quite the interesting subject to talk about.

Choosing the right people to be around

There’s a good chance that you’re not boring, but that you’re trying to become friends with the wrong type of people. Take an assessment of your interests and where you want to go in life. “The Power of Peers” is a small study by Dr. Emily Falk, which alludes to how being around others can somewhat influence who we become.

This is often something we hear about from entrepreneurs who are giving business advice. They say, “Surround yourself with the people who you want to be more like.” The reality is that we do somewhat “rub off” on each other as humans.

It’s very important to consider who you are trying to be around. And whether you actually fit in with them. If you’re religious, as an example, being around others who aren’t isn’t going to make you seem very “exciting” to them.

How to not be boring (a few tips to consider)

If you’re still feeling boring, take a few of these steps to try and improve the way that you are around others.

Bring energy to the table

You’re going to have to put on your best self. If you can bring 10% more energy to the conversation than it currently has, others around you are going to be more attracted to you. And could potentially listen to you.

Have interesting hobbies

The reality is that many of us want to be around other people who are exciting and interesting. And the only way to be one of those people to expand the things that you do when you have free time. Consider taking up an interesting hobby. Or one that others share.

For example, pickleball is a great hobby. And one that is gaining in popularity from 2022 to 2023. This could be a great hobby to open the doors for others to start conversations with you.

Look at your body language

A comfortable body language will signal to others that you’re an interesting person. Point your toes toward the person you’re talking to, make direct eye contact, and generally look “relaxed.”

If your arms are folded and you look uncomfortable, you don’t look approachable. And looking approachable is one of the key steps to being attractive to others around you.

Know your audience

I’m not suggesting that you change who you are. Or potentially become partially BPD yourself. What I am suggesting is to “read the room.” The best networkers in business often read the room. And take a survey of what they think others around them are going to be interested in. From there, they come up with ideas on what to talk about and why.

This is very different than having conversation starter questions prepared. Those types of questions can be helpful in thinking about topics and ideas to bring up. But in this way, you’re literally looking at the people around you and determining what they might be interested in.

Choose the right setting for the right approach

Let’s say you’re going on a work trip. And you’re going to meet your coworkers for the first time. Well, it might actually be time to be a little more reserved. And a little more “boring.” It’s vital to consider your surroundings and how you should behave accordingly.

Don’t think of this as changing who you are. Think of this as having “good manners” for the situations that you’re currently in.

Someone who is a little more “boring” at work might be the safer of the people to engage with. Someone who has a little “too much energy” might be more daunting to others.

Pretend you know everyone already

In social situations where there are more than a few people, it’s going to be hard to break out of your shell. Especially if you feel boring, already. The best way to do this is to pretend as though you know everyone, already.

Walk up to people and give them a firm handshake or hug. Pretend like you already know who they are and that you already have a strong relationship with them. This little trick can be a great way to make others feel attracted to you, from the start.

How to not be boring over text message

In today’s world—we text, a lot. On average, we send 72 text messages per day. That’s quite a bit of information that’s exchanged by text!

And the reality is that text message doesn’t show any of your true personality. There is no eye contact, there’s no body language, there’s no ability to see what shoes you’re wearing and spark a conversation from that. We are limited.

To be “not boring” over text, it’s great to use lots of assistive forms of media. Such as:

  • Adding GIFs to a message that are pertinent to the conversation.
  • Using lots of “LOL” or “ROFL” messages along with your text.
  • Asking multiple questions to the other person you are talking to, ensuring that the conversation continues.
  • Thinking about the right types of questions to ask them to make sure that the conversation is accurate and compelling.

Wrapping up—How not to be boring

The best thing to consider here is whether or not you’re actually boring. If you feel like you are or that you’re just “awkward” around certain social situations, then it’s great to consider the tips that were mentioned in this short guide.

Although, if you’re feeling uncertain if you’re actually boring—then consider who you are surrounding yourself with. And ask whether they are the right type of people for you. Or if they are the right type of people you really WANT to be around.

There’s potential that you’re not that interested in the conversation simply because you have nothing in common with the people you are around…

Fact checked:
Board reviewed by Marianne Tomlinson, LCSW (Couples and Family Therapy). Content is rigorously reviewed by a team of qualified and experienced fact checkers. Learn more.

About the author

Ryan Sanderson (LCSW) Ryan is a game and relationship enthusiast who enjoys all things quizzes, games, fun, love, relationships, and family. He's a licensed social worker and helps families, couples, and children in need. He's spoken about love and relationships on Salon.com, Forbes, and Mirror, to name a few.

Thank you! Your submission has been received!
Oops! Something went wrong while submitting the form.