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Would you prefer a long boring life or a short adventurous one?

Facing a pack of wolves while on a hike, climbing up a mountain in subzero temperatures, chasing dangerous criminals, investing in the stock market… these are all examples of a lifestyle a writer would prefer to experience from behind a laptop. The question of lifestyle preferences is what got me thinking: would you prefer a long, boring life or a short, adventurous one?

Daily writing prompt

What bores you?

The answer to that question, of course, depends on the answer to another question: what bores you? As you know, I’m a writer, so I get excited over a new book to read, and I’m happy when I have the perfect cup of tea to enjoy during a quiet afternoon. I prefer to read about other people’s adventures exploring the Amazon Rainforest, crossing the North Sea, or discovering who (or what) lives in that haunted house across the street.

There is a line in the movie Troy which I don’t remember word for word, but it goes something like this: Achilles’s mother says if he doesn’t fight at Troy, he can have a family and his children and grandchildren will remember him for a few generations before his name disappears. He can have a long, predictable life. If he fights at Troy, he will die young but he will be remembered for thousands of years as a gallant soldier and hero.

Some people want to take risks to do what they love, such as climbing Mount Everest, traveling to risky destinations around the world, or participating in risky sports.

Some people can’t take risks or do whatever they want because they have children, a spouse, or aging parents who depend on them. Sometimes the choice is ours, and sometimes it isn’t, depending on our life situation. People with responsibilities need to play it safe. They can’t risk their savings on cryptocurrency or invest thousands of dollars in a new startup company.

What one person thinks of as a boring life, another person does not. We don’t know what challenges another person is facing, such as disabilities that are invisible to us. Or a long-term illness. That reclusive neighbor who is always at home might be dealing with trauma, and it is a huge achievement just to go out with a few friends.

Some lives are cut short as a result of an accident or illness. But if they had a good life and they fought a good fight to keep going, it’s still a great life. Sometimes you don’t get to choose.

So is it better to live a long, boring life or a short and adventurous one? This would depend on what you want out of life. What is boring to you? What is fulfilling to you? Either choice is good. If you can look back on your life with a smile, then you’ve done well.

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