Waiting has become synonymous with wasting time. We all dread the Limbo feeling of the doctor’s office waiting room. The magazines are boring, time slows down, have to get out your iPhone. Waiting seems a waste, an inconvenience, or worse, a slight – after all, important people don’t have to wait.
This waiting room phenomenon has colored our ability to wait in other parts of our lives.
- We are impatient when things don’t go our way.
- If our memo isn’t answered for several days, we wonder what the holdup is.
- We want it now, now, now.
Impatience keeps us distracted, in perpetual motion and on the surface level of life, like skipping stones.
This intolerance for waiting is a lack of appreciation for what waiting can actually bring.
Mechanically speaking, most people operate optimally if they wait for a “nudge” from the outside that they can say YES or NO to. When they say YES, they find themselves drawn to something -- think romance, inspiration, kismet. Something inside them rises up and is called forth. A sleeping desire is awakened, followed by an influx of energy to start something.
This is the Wow Factor of Life.
But if you are too busy being busy, it is not possible to wait. When the kismet thing happens, you are already gone, having run off to the next thing that you thought of, fueled by a fear of staying still for a moment. Kismet arrives like the movie hero who finally comes to his senses and knocks on his Love’s door, only to find that she took a job in Chicago.
Waiting requires patience, no way around it. But it is the patience of the acrobat on the flying trapeze who lets go in mid-air and waits to be caught by her partner. For her it is an exciting waiting, that endless moment until she is caught (or falls into the net).
We need to get better at waiting. We need to turn waiting from something that is boring into an exciting, endless moment of allowing. Allowing the next amazing thing to happen. This way you are home when your Love rings the bell. Something deeper can guide you and you are no longer dictated to by the Hurry Gods.
Three practices in the art of waiting:
- Reserve 5 minutes each day to do nothing.
- Listen to the sound within you (that small, still voice) and notice how it communicates. That “voice” is unique to you. Find out how it sounds.
- Experiment for a full day, or if you are really brave, for a week, with waiting to be called by the next thing, rather than rushing headlong into another moment. Sit and do not do anything until you are 'called.' It won’t take long for the next thing to catch up to you. Then follow your inner YES or NO. Find out what happens next.
For some of us it is best to tune into the invitations that come to us. But, whether you hear that inner voice or listen for invitations, the waiting is the same. Patience is the starting point.
Contact me if you would like to learn how you operate mechanically and learn for yourself how you can wait for the very best that life has to offer.