The waiting game – we’ve all played it at some point in our lives. For most of us it started when we were young and we constantly waited for school to be done. For myself, there have many other times I have played this game – let’s see there has been the waiting to finish college, waiting to lose weight, waiting to find a new job, waiting for a raise or promotion, waiting to find a new boyfriend, waiting to figure out what I want to do with my life. And many of these I’ve played multiple times throughout my life. Even though we call it a game – it’s definitely not fun. It’s usually frustrating and exhausting. And sometimes the waiting game can last for years. So why then do we seem to keep playing it over and over again in our lives.
We start the game because where we are at during that time in our lives (aka – the story we have running through our minds about where we are) doesn’t feel good. But there’s an illusion with the game that we’ve come to believe that once these things happens – life will be good. Deceptively, it appears that all we are doing is waiting for the change to happen or to find someone but in reality what we actually end up waiting for is only a feeling (one that feels good).
When we rely on things or people outside of us to feel better – it ends up being short lived. So we play the game over and over again to go searching for the next thing that will make us feel better. It’s a losing game and what happens is we miss out on truly enjoying the journey of living life.
We are always evolving so we are going to continuously want new things, people, and experiences in our lives – so there is nothing wrong with wanting these. However, if we are constantly waiting for the next thing to feel better – the enjoyment of our lives is going to be short and brief. So how do we stop playing the waiting game and start living?
Here are some helpful tips to get started:
- Ask yourself what do you think having this thing or person in your life is going to bring you? Keeping digging until you discover how you think it’s going to make you feel?
- Choose to start feeling that way now. This starts with becoming aware of what you’re currently thinking about your life and then choosing new thoughts that feel better. And this can be as simple as deciding to focus on things around you that you appreciate (the sun , the snow, your pets, your friends, your health, your home, the air you breathe, clean water, a great cup of coffee or tea, your car starting, etc).
- Find simple things that you can do daily that automatically feel good. Even though it’s always our thoughts that create our emotions – things and people (animals too) help trigger our thoughts. There are many things you already have good thoughts and feelings around and don’t have to consciously think about it. This is about adding a few of these simple things to your daily life. Examples can be playing with an animal, going for a walk, listening to favorite music, volunteering, taking a bath, eating a piece of chocolate, talking to a friend, going to a movie, getting a massage, etc.
Are you currently playing the waiting game in your life? Decide and commit today that you’re done playing the waiting game and right now you’re going to choose to start enjoying the journey of your life. In the end it’s all we are really after anyways is the feeling and that’s always available to us right now.