I just read The Single Woman, the book published by the Twitter sensation Mandy Hale, a.k.a. The Single Woman. She wrote a section about Waiting. She refers to it as a waiting season.
I like that idea, it means it’s a passing phase. We’re all waiting for someone, some job, some phone call, some vacation, etc, she says. I agree, it does feel like you’re always waiting for something.
And I say, screw that.
For the very reason that you could be waiting forever for something, while missing everything around you.
Mandy Hale argues that we are waiting because it’s something we’re not ready for yet. That it is a time of preparation.
When I first read it, I agreed with it. But I have to completely disagree now. If you are in a season of preparation, it’s called winter. Inter is the time when everything is in a period of hibernation and preparing to bloom in spring. Winter isn’t about waiting, you enjoy winter for what it is.
In winter, the sun sets early so you get extra rest. The cold nights mean you get to have fun evenings indoors in front of the fire. You enjoy stews and hot tea and roasted foods. (yum, can you tell I’m a little hungry?)
It is not about waiting. It is about enjoying the hand you’ve been dealt.
I can only speak for myself, but I know if I start thinking about making my time about making the most of the waiting, I will continue to fixate on what I am waiting for. I know I need to let go and allow the Now to just happen. I must enjoy the Now, because that is all we’ve got.
If I focus on the future, I imagine all these incredible scenarios, then I am disappointed when the actual event happens. Or I begin to worry about what could possibly happen, and then I spend all my time in a state of worry.
So I have learned to deal with these periods of time where I could be waiting. Here is how I deal with it:
1. Confront the issue head on, if you can. Sometimes, you can’t confront the situation. You can’t rush the doctor to get test results, you can’t always talk to that guy that didn’t call after the first date. In the situations that you can confront the issue, please do. Just talk it over with whoever is giving you a problem and making you wait.
If you can’t confront the person, you can confront your reaction. Why are you so worried or anxious that you are living waiting for something? How can you resolve these uneasy feelings? What is in your power that you can control?
2. Let it go. Whatever it is that you are waiting for is obviously out of your control, so let go of your connection to it. I work as a stage manager for an outdoor theater company. When a storm is brewing we always have a few people staring at their smart phones, watching the radar trying to predict when the storm will hit. I like to take in the information, make a plan of action in my head, and then forget it. If I focus on my smart phone and predicting things, I will miss cues, I might not see something important that is happening on stage. I won’t stop the show so we can all wait for the storm to pass us, that would be silly. I figure that we should do what we can now and address the storm when it arrives. It’s out of my control, it’s going to happen whether I wait around for it or not.
I believe we should let go of the problem, do what you have to do to move on and keeping your momentum going forward.
I believe action will always be better than inaction. You can waste your entire life waiting around. Why do that? Even if the action that you take isn’t perfect, it’s better than sitting at home and waiting for the phone to ring.