The Art of Constructive Waiting

Today, I am writing my blog from my car, as I wait outside of yet another doctor’s appointment for a member of my family, and just lately there have been a number of these appointments.  I was reflecting on the fact that so much of our time these days is spent on waiting, waiting for the doctor, dentist, and medical practitioner of all kinds, the nail shop, the shopping line at the mall, the beauty shop, picking up the kids.

All of us seem to be so time poor these days and for lots of reasons, we are running all the time. Working, running around with kids to various appointments, tutoring, after school care and sports, trying to carve out me time at the gym, or with a friend. Sometimes it can feel like our day is just running from one thing to the next with no time to enjoy where we are at the present moment. We all have days like this.

A client I was working with the other day, said she was time poor and it didn’t matter how much she had written in her diary, and how well she was tried to manage her time, she was still never had enough time.  When we worked on her time schedule, she was extremely busy, but we found a gap – she didn’t use the time in between!

For a lot of us this time is completely lost.  I use my in between time as an opportunity to take a moment and do what I call constructive waiting. 

It’s a time to stop running and to pause a moment.  I always have a pen and writing pad in my bag, so that over the time I am sitting or waiting, I can write.  I might write a blog or just the beginnings of it in dot points. I might use it as a time to reflect on an idea for an upcoming event or training.

Sometimes I use it to write down all the things that I am grateful for at the moment. Just taking stock of the good in our lives is so powerful.

Sometimes I do a self check in, I just take a moment to be quiet and reflect on where I am, my heartbeat and my thoughts towards myself, how am I feeling, what do I need etc.

Sometimes our busyness is about running away from ourselves, it’s hard to reflect and listen to our inner voice or assess our own needs. This quiet time is a good opportunity for reflection.  You might learn something new about yourself so give yourself the opportunity to take stock, use this time more effectively and remember new learning always comes with growth.

Make some time today or sometime during the week to try out some constructive waiting ideas of your own. You might be surprised at what comes to you.