It's been months since I moved out of my old residence and started looking for a new place to live in.🏡
But it feels like it's been much longer than that.
It's one of the most frustrating things I've ever had to do in my life; and it can be quite discouraging, especially when it looks like you might have gotten a break - but then everything suddenly falls through.
I've spoken to friends about it, received a lot of assurance from them that it's normal for it to take this long, as well as helpful tips on how to improve my chances of finding something. But the search is still taking much longer than I'd like it to. 😣
It's through this experience that I've discovered how much I dislike waiting, and how impatient I can get when I have to wait...
The word 'impatient' brings to mind the many times my Dad and I were stuck in traffic together back in Nairobi. This happened quite often; and whenever it did, he would get restless. Regardless of how long or short a time we spent stuck in traffic, he'd always talk and act like we were never going to move again - even though it was obvious that we eventually would. I'd mentally shake my head and smile as the thought, "Daddy is so impatient" ran through my mind.
To my surprise, however, I now realize that I'm more like him than I thought! Lol. I hate feeling like I'm stuck in a situation. I dread it, and find myself trying to avoid it as much as I possibly can, even though I know that it won't last forever.
But it's impossible to avoid waiting. On the contrary, it makes more sense to embrace it; because, although we often experience high and low moments, most of our life is actually spent in the in-between moments i.e. in the waiting period.
So instead of fighting it, I've decided to try my best to learn from the waiting period. And I thought it only fitting to share what I've learnt so far with those of you who might also find waiting to be a challenge for you:
I've learnt that:
1. Waiting reveals what kind of person you are: how do you behave while you're waiting? Do you sulk like a child when things don't go your way? Do you complain? Do you act as if you're entitled to whatever it is you're waiting for? And if the answer to these questions is "Yes" (which it was for me in many cases),what does that say about you?
After realizing that I was guilty of many of the above behaviours, I decided to switch gears and start using my waiting period to reflect, and to try to become the kind of person who adopts a positive attitude instead of a negative one when waiting for something I want.
2. Waiting teaches you to be patient: Like I mentioned above, impatience seems to run in my family. 😅But I've discovered that when I'm forced to wait for something I really want, I have no choice but to practice patience. And patience is indeed a virtue and a quality worth having. Not only does it make you mentally stronger, but it also teaches you self-control.
3. Waiting gives you time to think: the waiting period, I've learnt, is the best time to ask yourself why you want whatever you want so much. Are your reasons for wanting it good? Or bad? And if they're good, then why not just wait for whatever it is patiently? What's the rush? Most importantly, the waiting period has taught me to ask myself a question that I sometimes forget to address "Am I really prepared/ready to receive what I want?"🤔
4.Last but not least, waiting gives your brain time to adjust to new opportunities and new surroundings: we may not realize it, but our busy schedules hardly give us enough time to prepare for the next season of our lives. After graduating from high school, we need some time out to mentally prepare for college; and after college, we need time to mentally prepare for our working life. When switching jobs, we also need time in between jobs to figure out what wasn't working in our previous job, and what needs to change before we start a new job.
But unless we are intentional about creating this time for ourselves, we'll never get it. We'll probably end up going round in circles and getting frustrated, because we can't figure out how to get out of the vicious cycle of reliving our mistakes. That's why waiting in between seasons is not only important, but also necessary. It allows us to fully process the previous seasons in our lives, and mentally prepare for the next ones.
In conclusion, I've decided that instead of sulking, complaining or developing a bad attitude whenever I have to wait for something, I'll try to figure out how this time can be used to my benefit. Is it allowing me to address certain things that I didn't have time to address before? Is it teaching me patience? Is it making room for me to adjust my mind to my new surroundings? Is it allowing me to mentally and physically prepare myself for the next season of my life?
If you choose to deal with your waiting seasons in this way, you'll not only start to see them in a more positive light, but you'll also appreciate whatever it is you were waiting for so much more when it comes. 😉😊