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The Habits of Highly Boring People by Chris Sauve (Transcript)

Chris Sauve

Full text of Chris Sauve on The Habits of Highly Boring People @ TEDxCarletonU conference.

Listen to the MP3 Audio here: MP3 – The habits of highly boring people by Chris Sauve @ TEDxCarletonU


We’re going to start today with a quote by Gustave Lebel, and he said, “Be boring and orderly in your life so that you may be violent and original in your work.”

And when I originally heard that quote, I thought it with a contradiction. It didn’t make any sense to me that you could be boring and exciting commonplace and original all at the same time. But I thought more about it, and I realized it wasn’t about being a boring person.

Boring people are unoriginal. They are unexcited. That’s the definition. It was about doing boring things, and that sometimes we could do boring things. We could put structures in our lives that made us less exciting in some way. But what they allowed us to do was they allowed us to focus. They allowed us to do more amazing things in other ways. So that structure wasn’t an inhibitor of creativity, as I thought it was. Structure was actually an enabler of creativity. It was an enabler of a more fulfilling life.

So I thought about boring people. Or at least, I thought about people who were boring in some ways but who did incredible things in other. And I looked for traits and behaviors that they had in common. And I found a few. I’m going to talk about them today. But I laughed when I found them, because they were so boring. They were so commonplace, so easy to implement, so obvious that I think we skip right by them. We try and be exciting right away. We don’t worry about doing that structure part, because that’s damn boring. But I’m here to tell you that that is the absolute key.

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