A new study has uncovered the point at which most men cease to be adventurous and interesting people and become dull sticks-in-the-mud, unwilling to try new things or take risks.
The research was conducted by the residential-sharing website Airbnb. They surveyed 2,000 people to determine the age at which we reach our peaks of boredom and excitement. Naturally this serves as market research for a firm whose customers are independent travelers.
Their results show that men are most boring at age 39. There are a number of reasons for this. Men in their twenties and early thirties are more likely to be dating multiple partners before settling down, have fewer responsibilities, and are going through different jobs and career transitions.
According to the Airbnb study, 15 per cent of guys in their thirties say they have become more boring since meeting their partner, and one in five (20 per cent) say their sense of adventure has plummeted since having kids.
Only 16 per cent of people in their thirties said they would be willing to try a daredevil activity such as sky-diving or bungee-jumping (compared to 25 per cent of 18-29 year-olds.)
“It’s undoubtedly pretty tough to maintain your sense of adventure and youthful joie de vivre in the face of nappy (diaper) changes, parents’ evenings and the daily school run; ‘to adult’ is arguably a verb in its own right,” said Airbnb’s James McClure. “However, we’re firm believers in incorporating new challenges and opportunities into your daily life to keep things fresh and exciting, whatever your age.”
To that end, they also polled their survey participants about what they thought were the best ways to keep being adventurous in life. Here are the most popular responses.
The top 10 ways to avoid being boring
Staying out until the early hours on a weekday
Trying a new hobby
Going out of the way to make a new friend
Booking a spontaneous holiday
Learning a new skill
Visiting a friend unannounced
Going on a spontaneous shopping trip
Asking someone out
Trying a new sport
Some of these suggestions are better than others. I can’t stay out late on a weeknight anymore. I think I lost the ability to do quality, creative work on no sleep at about age 35. The payoff isn’t worth the payback anymore.
I don’t necessarily see going shopping or popping by a friend’s house as being terribly adventurous, either. Hobbies can be, if they are rock climbing or fencing. Stamp collecting, maybe not so much.
Making new friends, acquiring new skills, spontaneous travelling, these all seem like good ways to keep things fresh. They just aren’t always easy to do when you have a spouse, kids, and career all making ample demands on your time and energy.
The good news is that being boring in your late thirties and your forties is a temporary slump. The study showed that participants over the age of 50 actually feel that their sense of adventure is the same as it was when they were in their twenties. Nearly a third of those 50+ surveyed (29 per cent) feel they actively seek out new ways to spend their free time.
People over 50 are 22 per cent more likely to book a spontaneous trip than those in their thirties and 11 per cent more likely to splurge on a fancy meal out.
Worried that it is happening to you? Check out the top ten signs that you are a boring person.