“The Opportunity in Waiting”

June 30, 2010

One very important opportunity is sitting there looking at you when you find yourself waiting: you can be better prepared for what happens next than you would have been otherwise.  That may seem obvious to most people, and it may even seem stupid to some, but the fact remains that many don’t see fit to use whatever time cushion unfolds itself in waiting to be even more ready for whatever is about to come.

This is a very sad reality.  While additional thinking or practice or double-checking could be taking place as you wait, thus making it more likely that things will go well and less likely that you will fail or mess up, what usually happens is that the waiting person frets or fritters away the “free time.”

The attitude that sees and exploits the opportunity in waiting is the difference between that time period becoming valuable additional “prep”/honing time versus it being nothing more or less than wasted time.  What makes the difference in the attitude is wisdom—having the maturity to “get it” that time is a limited commodity that you can’t get back and that being as prepared as possible for whatever you face in life is often the difference between success and failure.

But, you say, what about when the waiting is for things you don’t need to prepare for, like a doctor’s appointment or a dinner reservation or driving in heavy traffic?  Instead of this being a problem with what I just said, it turns out to be another unexpected blessings.  You see, in many cases, you can use that time to get ready in various ways for other situations that require mental preparation, but which aren’t immediately following.  A little thinking ahead will quickly bring such needs to mind.


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