What are you waiting for?

According to the influential spiritual writer Eckhart Tolle, most of us spend around 70% of our lives waiting. This could be anything from waiting for our train to arrive, for the traffic lights to turn green to simply waiting for our coffee to brew.

Interestingly, waiting is usually associated with impatience, boredom and frustration. Is there ever anything positive about waiting? How can we live without having to deal with the stress so often associated with having to constantly wait?

Often when we wait, time seems to drag on forever.

“These traffic lights have been stuck on red for ages” is a common catchcry.

Alternatively, have you ever had the feeling when time seemed to move faster than usual?

“Wow, is that the time? Gee time has travelled fast!”

For me, time “flies” whenever I am engaged or absorbed in the garden, making models or inventing new puzzles and games. It is like being in a virtual state of timelessness.

So I think being engaged in an activity, particularly one that you enjoy, can reduce stress and boosts our capacity to exercise and stimulate our minds.

But what can we actively do if we are stuck at a railway level crossing?

Sometimes the act of simply watching, observing what is going on around you can negate the time “drag” associated with waiting.

In my experience, some of my greatest inspirations have stemmed from just being present and in the moment.

Changing our mindset, to have an awareness of the detrimental effects that waiting can place on all of us is a vital component of maintaining a healthy work-life balance, as well as supporting our mental health wellbeing.

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