By Susan Begeman Steiner
Have you ever had someone ask you what you are waiting for? if so, you know the meaning is clear: Get into action - stop wasting time!
Waiting has become synonymous with wasting time. We all dread the Limbo feeling of the doctor’s office waiting room. The magazines are boring, time slows down, have to get out your iPhone. Waiting seems a waste, an inconvenience, or worse, a slight – after all, important people don’t have to wait.
This waiting room phenomenon has colored our ability to wait in other parts of our lives.
Impatience keeps us distracted, in perpetual motion and on the surface level of life, like skipping stones.
This intolerance for waiting is a lack of appreciation for what waiting can actually bring.
Mechanically speaking, most people operate optimally if they wait for a “nudge” from the outside that they can say YES or NO to. When they say YES, they find themselves drawn to something -- think romance, inspiration, kismet. Something inside them rises up and is called forth. A sleeping desire is awakened, followed by an influx of energy to start something.
This is the Wow Factor of Life.
But if you are too busy being busy, it is not possible to wait. When the kismet thing happens, you are already gone, having run off to the next thing that you thought of, fueled by a fear of staying still for a moment. Kismet arrives like the movie hero who finally comes to his senses and knocks on his Love’s door, only to find that she took a job in Chicago.
Waiting requires patience, no way around it. But it is the patience of the acrobat on the flying trapeze who lets go in mid-air and waits to be caught by her partner. For her it is an exciting waiting, that endless moment until she is caught (or falls into the net).
We need to get better at waiting. We need to turn waiting from something that is boring into an exciting, endless moment of allowing. Allowing the next amazing thing to happen. This way you are home when your Love rings the bell. Something deeper can guide you and you are no longer dictated to by the Hurry Gods.
Three practices in the art of waiting:
For some of us it is best to tune into the invitations that come to us. But, whether you hear that inner voice or listen for invitations, the waiting is the same. Patience is the starting point.
Contact me if you would like to learn how you operate mechanically and learn for yourself how you can wait for the very best that life has to offer.
Get in touch if you would like to learn how you operate mechanically and learn for yourself how you can wait for the best life has to offer.
By By Melanie Curtin, Contributor Inc.com
Prioritizing what's important is challenging in today's world. The split focus required to maintain a career and a home, not to mention a Facebook feed, can feel overwhelming.
Enter the science of what to prioritize, when.
For over 75 years, Harvard's Grant and Glueck study has tracked the physical and emotional well-being of two populations: 456 poor men growing up in Boston from 1939 to 2014 (the Grant Study), and 268 male graduates from Harvard's classes of 1939-1944 (the Glueck study).
Due to the length of the research period, this has required multiple generations of researchers. Since before WWII, they've diligently analyzed blood samples, conducted brain scans (once they became available), and pored over self-reported surveys, as well as actual interactions with these men, to compile the findings.
The conclusion? According to Robert Waldinger, director of the Harvard Study of Adult Development, one thing surpasses all the rest in terms of importance:
"The clearest message that we get from this 75-year study is this: Good relationships keep us happier and healthier. Period."
Not how much is in your 401(k). Not how many conferences you spoke at--or keynoted. Not how many blog posts you wrote or how many followers you had or how many tech companies you worked for or how much power you wielded there or how much you vested at each.
No, the biggest predictor of your happiness and fulfillment overall in life is, basically, love.
Specifically, the study demonstrates that having someone to rely on helps your nervous system relax, helps your brain stay healthier for longer, and reduces both emotional as well as physical pain.
The data is also very clear that those who feel lonely are more likely to see their physical health decline earlier and die younger.
"It's not just the number of friends you have, and it's not whether or not you're in a committed relationship," says Waldinger. "It's the quality of your close relationships that matters."
What that means is this: It doesn't matter whether you have a huge group of friends and go out every weekend or if you're in a "perfect" romantic relationship (as if those exist). It's the quality of the relationships--how much vulnerability and depth exists within them; how safe you feel sharing with one another; the extent to which you can relax and be seen for who you truly are, and truly see another.
According to George Vaillant, the Harvard psychiatrist who directed the study from 1972 to 2004, there are two foundational elements to this: "One is love. The other is finding a way of coping with life that does not push love away."
Thus, if you've found love (in the form of a relationship, let's say) but you undergo a trauma like losing a job, losing a parent, or losing a child, and you don't deal with that trauma, you could end up "coping" in a way that pushes love away.
This is a very good reminder to prioritize not only connection but your own capacity to process emotions and stress. If you're struggling, get a good therapist. Join a support group. Invest in a workshop. Get a grief counselor. Take personal growth seriously so you are available for connection.
Because the data is clear that, in the end, you could have all the money you've ever wanted, a successful career, and be in good physical health, but without loving relationships, you won't be happy.
The next time you're scrolling through Facebook instead of being present at the table with your significant other, or you're considering staying late at the office instead of getting together with your close friend, or you catch yourself working on a Saturday instead of going to the farmer's market with your sister, consider making a different choice.
"Relationships are messy and they're complicated," acknowledges Waldinger. But he's adamant in his research-backed assessment:
"The good life is built with good relationships."
Is it time to work on your interpersonal relationships
Self-Help Book / Personal Development