Waiting is hard, isn't it? It's like the Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers song goes, "The waiting is the hardest part." When there's something you really, really want, having to wait for it can be tough and the longer you have to wait for it, the tougher it can be. I have been interested in writing a blog post about waiting for a while, yet in a weird way, I have kind of waited to write this blog post. Nevertheless, I have been thinking a lot about waiting recently. For a start, I think there are different types of waiting.
One way is how likely it is for the thing you are waiting for to happen. Sometimes we are waiting on something certain and sometimes we are waiting with a reliance on hope. If you are waiting for the weekend, it WILL happen, as you are only ever at most 5 days away from the weekend. If you started doing press-ups and can't do very many but look forward to the day that you can do 25, it's not a guarantee you will be able to do that many but that's not an unreasonable number and so as long as you keep doing them every day, in time you WILL get there. If you're starting a new business and want to make a certain amount of money, maybe it will happen and maybe it won't, with any business venture there is always risk. If you were waiting to win the lottery, that's very unlikely to happen.
Sometimes, waiting comes in the form of perseverance, keep doing something and it will happen or at least it becomes much more likely to happen. But other times, waiting can come in the form of doing nothing. Some things are very much in your control and some things aren't. When you have control, you can take action and it feels much less like waiting when you're doing something. But when things are out of your control, there's very little you can do and it can be difficult. If you do have control, any control at all, don't wait to start something, don't wait for everything to be right, don't wait for perfection and don't wait for the stars to align. Just start and make the most of the control you do have.
Sometimes when waiting you are able to carry on and live your life normally. Other times, you can feel stuck in limbo, where you can't live your life one way or the other. Imagine you are buying a new television that takes a few days to deliver. If you're buying it when your current one is still working, you just keep watching your regular TV until the new one arrives. But if you are buying a new TV because the current one died, then instead you have to spend a few days watching the smaller one upstairs, going to a friend's house for your favourite shows or just going without. You wouldn't go to any more effort than that, as it's only a few days.
Obviously the amount of time we have to wait can cause difficulty. But time is relevant and dependent on what we are waiting for. If the heating in your house broke on a cold day and someone came and fixed it all within 2 hours, that's great. But if you waited 2 hours for a pizza delivery, that's not so great. So the difficulty is more about if the time is longer than what we are accustomed to or changes from what we are expecting. We psych ourselves up and summon the patience needed to wait for an expected amount of time but if we wait beyond that, we start to run on empty. If your oven broke down (a lot of things are breaking down in this blog post) and you ordered a new one that will be delivered and set up for you in two days, you can handle that and plan your meals, as you can cook on the hob or microwave and you can eat out or get takeaway food for the next two days. But if after the two days you're then told it will take a further two weeks, that is naturally frustrating. You might not be able to cancel and get a different oven sorted, you can be left in limbo as stated earlier, where you can't quite do one thing but can't quite do another. When the limbo is stretched out, this can be difficult and in this kind of situation, it can be incredibly easy to get very impatient.
What I have been pondering lately is how do you develop patience? What I personally find is that the longer I am waiting for something important, the more impatient I get about it. I feel as though the waiting depletes me of patience, rather than adding to it. I kind of begin to worry that all of my patience is being used up and I get afraid about waiting for anything else. But what I also realised, and this is the strange bit and sounds contrary to what I just said, is that I do actually get more patient on the whole as a result of those impatient experiences. Though I lose my patience with one thing (usually something big), I gain it with everything else in my life. I am reminded that when there is something you really, really want that if you can wait and if you can stick with it… it is absolutely 100% worth it.
So, as you have been reading this, you may have been waiting to find out what is the point I am trying to make here. In all honesty, I don't really know, I'm still waiting to find out.