So Tuesday’s blog was about how difficult waiting can be. It’s so hard to mark time while we wait for something exciting or something we’re afraid of or something we’re worrying about. So in this inaugural Five for Friday, I’m going to share some tips for waiting. These things are not going to make waiting breeze by. There are still going to be times when you feel uncomfortable or frustrated with the waiting, but hopefully it will make waiting a little easier.
- Focus on the present. This is a good time to learn some mindfulness skills and use them! Do things to bring you back to the present rather than living solely in the possibilities of the future. If you do yoga, this is a good time to brush off those skills. Try to focus on the good things happening in your life today. Use your journal to document things you are grateful for each day. I know, I just went all therapist on you, but research shows people who keep gratitude journals report more satisfaction with their life and higher levels of happiness.
- Research the future. Do not, I repeat, DO NOT do this if you are waiting on medical test results. All you will do is increase your anxiety and make yourself miserable in the process. Google does not have a medical degree and really can’t provide you with the personalized information you will need. However, if you’re opening a new business, wanting to create a healthier lifestyle, getting ready for a move, or a multitude of other things we wait on, the waiting time is a great time to research the things you’ll need for your new endeavor. Whether it’s researching the schools in the area you’re moving to, finding a new social group, learning the business laws or licensing laws for a new business, or finding the best deals for a big purchase, you’ll be ready with the best information when the time comes.
- Learn from your last book. Use this time to look back on what is ending to make way for the new in your life. This is not a time to assign blame or beat yourself up for perceived mistakes. BUT, it can be a time to think about how you would do things differently now that you have the additional experience created by time. I have yet to meet someone who made what turned out to be the wrong decision on purpose. In general, we make the best decisions we can with the best information we have at the time. Sometimes it works and sometimes it doesn’t and sometimes the world around us changes. Now that you’re waiting for something new, it’s a good time to think about what you may want to do differently this time around and what worked really well that you’d like to replicate.
- Get Organized. Often when we’re waiting there’s a lot of down time. This is the time to get yourself ready for the upcoming changes. Are you accepting a new position that will limit your time? Maybe you want to focus on putting meals in the freezer, simplifying your cleaning routine, or hiring a cleaning service. Are you waiting on health news that might mean a lot of doctor’s appointments? Maybe you want to use this time to planning who will pick up your children or take them to events, setting up a room that will be comfortable for you if your mobility is going to be limited, or getting other appointments or big projects done. Regardless of the change that is coming, there are things you can do now to make the transition easier on yourself and on your family and friends.
- Have some fun. There’s only so much planning, learning, and organizing you can do. You will eventually run out of things related to whatever you’re waiting on. Rather than continuing to obsess about the waiting, go have some fun. Spend a little extra time with friends, work on a hobby you enjoy, or even learn something new. The only requirement is that it’s fun and it helps you take your mind off waiting. And that’s it’s not unhealthy or damaging to you of course.
So there you have it. Five things you can do to make the waiting a little easier. Again, there will still be times that you feel uncomfortable, antsy, worried, afraid, and a multitude of other feelings. This is normal and expected. Sometimes we just have to feel uncomfortable. That’s life.