Saturday, January 5, 2008

Waiting ...

"I hope you'll hear what I'm about to tell you. I hope you'll hear it

all the way down to your toes. When you're waiting, you're not doing
nothing. You're doing the most important something there is. You're
allowing your soul to grow up. If you can't be still and wait, you can't
become what God created you to be."

"When the Heart Waits" by Sue Monk Kidd

~*~ Topic of the Week - Learning to Wait~*~

I received an email this week from a woman who was anxiously waiting to hear about whether or not she was chosen for a job that felt like the perfect fit for her soul. Like so many job searches that seem to take forever, this poor woman had been waiting for two months. Although she had been warned that the process would take a while, it felt frustrating and scary. She asked for my help in learning to be patient.

Her email hit home for me since I've done a lot of waiting this year -- waiting for my husband Michael to get better, waiting for our new house to be completed, waiting to unpack boxes and spread my wings so I can feel a bit normal again. As I wrote many years ago in Life Makeovers, for months I've felt like a giant hold button has been pressed on my life and I've been left with no choice but to hang on :).

I've never been a big fan of waiting. Like many of us, I usually want everything yesterday. And yet, as I look back over my life (and over the last year, especially), the times I've spent waiting have been some of the most meaningful and insightful. Usually a waiting period has signaled a
turning point -- a period of soul growth that leads to something far better. It's during these times of transition that I've settled more deeply into myself, connecting to a strength of character that I hadn't known existed.

Although waiting can feel like agony, it may be exactly what you need to do to prepare for the next stage of your life. Think of it as a time to connect with your inner wisdom on a whole new level -- an opportunity to get to know yourself even better. Here are a few things you can do to
make the waiting period easier:

~*~ Spend more time journaling to deepen your connection to yourself.
~*~ Invest in your physical health by moving your body to release any pent-up anxiety.
~*~ Express your feelings. Pound pillows, yell and scream, or allow yourself a good, healing cry.
~*~ Listen to inspirational music or catch up on your favorite movies when you need a break.
~*~ Read a good self-help book or listen to personal development audio programs to inspire your growth.
~*~ Spend regular time with a friend who makes you laugh.

Do what you can to embrace the discomfort, knowing that if you use this time wisely, you will strengthen your personal power, the kind of power that no outside person or event can ever give you. And remember, although waiting is a personal journey, there's no need to wait in isolation. Share your fears, concerns, frustrations and hopes for the future with trusted loved ones who can support you in your waiting. By doing this, you'll experience another benefit of waiting -- a deeper connection to those you love.

Years ago, when I wrote about a period of waiting that felt hard, a reader named Roberta sent me a copy of Sue Monk Kidd's book "When the Heart Waits." It's one of those little gems that I keep with me for times like this. If you need a little spiritual sustenance while you wait, I encourage you to check it out. And also, remember this: While you wait, the world is conspiring in your favor . . .

~*~ Take Action Challenge ~*~

Embrace your time of waiting. If there's an area of your life that feels like it's on hold, consciously sit with the waiting this week. Don't try to change things, push the flow or control the circumstances. Instead, sit quietly and be open to the messages from within. Use this time to relax and rest. When your life starts to move forward, you'll be glad you did.

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