It is a fact that we are busier than we have ever been. Thanks to advances in communication we can be reached on multiple channels at any time of day. The expectations have also changed so that if we do get an e-mail that is “urgent” it needs to be taken care of no matter where you are or what you are doing. The good news is we are more productive as well. The bad news is we are all stressed out. We feel like we can’t spare any time to wait for anything. The truth is you are going to have to wait for some things in life, and, usually, all of the best things are worth waiting for. So what do you do while you are waiting, You don’t want to just stand around twiddling your thumbs. I came up with a few ways to wait without wasting time.
The first thing you can do is to make sure you are always carrying a good book. It can be a hard copy or an audio book or even keep it on your kindle, but make sure you have access to knowledge. You are never wasting time if you are learning. Think of it as an investment. With that knowledge you will be able to do something you have always wanted to do, be better at your job, or get your creative juices flowing. Even reading fiction can help to refresh and stimulate the create side of your brain.
The second thing you can do is to always carry a list. It can be on a sticky note or on any device – just make a list of all the people that you need to talk to, would like to catch up with, or should congratulate. Your personal network is another asset that goes down in value when you get busy. No relationship is a waste of time. You have friends and they have friends and some of those friends might be friends that you want.
The next thing you can do is walk. Chances are that if you are too busy to wait you are too busy to workout. A little exercise can go a long way for mental and physical health. If you are twenty minutes early for a meeting, go for a quick jaunt up and down the stairs or around the block. You are never wasting time if you are taking care of your health.
The fourth thing you can do if you are feeling a little antsy is to fuel your hobby. If you have been busy your favorite hobby was probably one of the first things to get cut. You can use your laptop or your phone to look up information on what has been going on with your favorite pastime. To keep your sanity, you need to make time for work and family and yourself. You need to do the things that remind you how much fun life is instead of how much work life is. If you don’t have a hobby, use some of your waiting time to research something you’re interested in.
The fifth and final thing you can do to not waste time is to call home. This is probably the most important thing you can do on this list. Your family misses you. You have been so busy and they have been so understanding that it would mean the world if you took five or ten minutes to call. You can thank your partner for being so wonderful, find out what your kids have been up to, or make plans to do something fun because if you need it everyone probably needs it.