How to Avoid the Anxiety of Waiting

Waiting. No one really likes it. But, it seems to be a regular part of life. How do we move from anxiety and impatience to peace and contentment? Find out in this helpful post today.

This week, I’ve been in “waiting” mode.

And, I really HATE to wait!

I’ll admit it.

I’m pretty impatient.

No, I’m really impatient!

Whether it’s waiting in the afternoon traffic, waiting at the doctor’s office, waiting for a phone call, or waiting for God to answer a prayer – I don’t enjoy it.

And, I’ve noticed I’m not the only one.

As I’ve looked around while waiting, I’ve noticed I’m in very good company. 

No one really likes to wait.

Waiting can cause anxiety, worry, doubt, and frustration!

So, I’d like to suggest a way to avoid these negative responses to waiting – to avoid the ANXIETY of waiting.

Just for fun, next time you have to wait in line or in traffic, look around you. 

You’ll notice some of the most amazing sights.

In fact, there are about SIX kinds of “waiters” in our world:

1] The Jittery “Waiters

Some people get really jittery when they have to wait.

For example, when my sweet daddy is ready to go somewhere and he has to wait on my mom or on someone else, he gets jittery. He paces around the house, jingles the change in his pocket, and almost gets a little hyper. The wait brings out the jitters in him.

When people have to wait in the Department of Motor Vehicles, some of them get jittery.  They tap their fingers, re-cross their legs repeatedly, and some even sigh loudly.

~ How about you, are you a jittery “waiter?”

2] The Anxious “Waiters

There are some people who wait in an anxious manner. 

They get worried, upset, nervous, and fearful about what is coming next. 

Fear grips them as they wait for the next event, the next red light, the next phone call, or the next challenge in life.  They wait in fear.

  • One friend of mine lives this way.  Every news report, every email, every event in her life just compounds her fears.  What if this happens?  What if that happens?  What will we do?
  • Her life and her time “waiting” flood her heart with fear.

~ How about you?  Are you a fearful “waiter?”

3] The Talking “Waiters

This is that man or woman whose words gust to hurricane-force speeds when they have to wait. 

They get on their cell phones and rack up the minutes. 

They talk to the person next to them in the waiting room, who just nicely nods and listens. 

They share every detail on Facebook or send out 50 tweets while they are seated and waiting!

Waiting attacks them, and they start to gush!

~ Is this your way to wait? Are you a talking “waiter?”

4] The Get-Much-Done “Waiter

This is that person who gets busy doing everything they can to pass them time as they wait. 

You know the type… when they have a doctor’s visit, they bring a whole basket of things to do while they wait.

No minute is wasted for this individual.  They must make the most of every spare moment. 

  • These are the women you see putting on makeup as they drive to work. 
  • These are those who mess with their phones while they are stopped at a light. 
  • These are those men and women who never sit still – ever. 
  • Multitasking is the name of the game for this person

~ How about you, are you a busy “waiter?”

5] The Sad “Waiters

When you sit near them in a car or waiting room, they seem defeated. 

Life is already hard enough. 

Now, this…

They have a lot of Ziggy in them:

How Do You Respond When You Have To WAIT? - Melanie Redd

 Or, Eeyore:

How Do You Respond When You Have To WAIT? - Melanie Redd

~ Are you one of these “waiters?” The sad “waiters?”

6] The Peaceful “Waiters”

These are those men and women who’ve discovered the “secrets” of waiting.  

They wait well.  

They seem peaceful even in the most difficult or lengthy or challenging circumstances.  

What is their secret?  

I believe that these folks have learned the secret of being content – no Waiting. No one really likes it. But, it seems to be a regular part of life. How do we move from anxiety and impatience to peace and contentment? Find out in this helpful post today.matter what is going on around them.

They have learned to be QUIET and STILL deep within their souls.

There is no fidgeting, panicking, anxiety, talking, or multi-tasking deep within their hearts.

They are calmly at peace with God, and able to be calmly at peace with life.

Consider these words:

Psalm 37:7a

“Be still in the presence of the Lord, and wait patiently for him to act.” 

Psalm 46:10

Be still, and know that I am God!”

Hannah Whitall Smith, Streams in the Desert

“A quiet spirit is of inestimable value in carrying on outward activities; and nothing so hinders the working of the hidden spiritual forces, upon which, after all, our success in everything really depends, as a spirit of unrest and anxiety.

There is immense power in stillness.

A great saint once said, “All things come to him who knows how to trust and be silent.” The words are pregnant with meaning. A knowledge of this fact would immensely change our ways of working. Instead of restless struggles, we would “sit down” inwardly before the Lord, and would let the Divine forces of His Spirit work out in silence the ends to which we aspire.

You may not see or feel the operations of this silent force, but be assured it is always working mightily, and will work for you, if you only get your spirit still enough to be carried along by the currents of its power.”

So, poor “waiters” like me — take heart!

If we can be still before God in the deepest recesses of our INSIDES, then we can deal with the chaos, waiting, and events swirling around us on the OUTSIDE!

Peace deep within can lead to peace all around. Click To Tweet

I pray we will all move toward becoming more peaceful waiters…

Waiting. No one really likes it. But, it seems to be a regular part of life. How do we move from anxiety and impatience to peace and contentment? Find out in this helpful post today.

How do you deal with waiting?

~ Which type of waiter are you?

~ What has God taught you about waiting and how to better handle it?

I always enjoy hearing from you!

**And, would you do me a favor — if this article has helped you today — would you share it with someone else? Maybe a friend, coworker, or family member…

~ Photo of Ziggy (by Tom Wilson) Found on gocomics.com

~ Photo of Eeyore Found on blogs.disney.com

*This post has been revised and posted again from October of 2015.

~ I regularly link to these AMAZING SITES~

© Melanie Redd and Ministry of Hope, 2016. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this blog’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to Melanie Redd and Ministry of Hope with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.

About helloredds@gmail.com

Blessed wife of Randy for over 25 years, mom to two great college students, blogger, women's ministry coach, speaker and author who is amazed by God's grace-

33 thoughts on “How to Avoid the Anxiety of Waiting

    1. Me too, Sarah, I don’t sit well at all! Got to keep my mind and hands busy!

      Thanks for stopping by to leave a word today. I really appreciate you and your visit.

      And, I hope you have a wonderful weekend~
      Melanie

  1. Love the cartoons! Another great post. We all spend a rather large portion of life doing just this, WAITING! Thanks for giving us something to think about next time, and every time, we have to wait!

  2. I’m a combo waiter…#1 and #4! Depending on how late others are making me, I get jittery because I don’t like being late, ever. #4, I am a great multi-tasker and so whenever I am waiting, I get things done or I will become an anxious waiter. Peaceful waiter, I can be that way, but it takes planning. Most of our lives are spent waiting so you’re right, we might as well practice peacefulness. Happy weekend to you Mel.

    1. Hey Michelle,

      Combo waiter sounds interesting! I’m glad your found yourself on the post!

      I’m horrible at waiting, but learning to be much more peaceful!

      Sure do appreciate you stopping by to leave a good word!

      Hope you have a blessed weekend~
      Melanie

  3. Love the quote from the “great saint”. So true and encouraging. We need to trust that He is working even when we don’t see it with our eyes. More going on than we know.

  4. I am definitely a Get-Much-Done waiter. I almost always have a book with me just in case I have to wait somewhere. I never thought about extrapolating that to the way I deal with waiting for the big things in life, but I definitely try to stay busy so I’m distracted from what I’m anxiously waiting for.

    1. Hey Kristin,

      Thanks for stopping by for a visit today.

      I’m a get much done kind of waiter too. I hate to just sit there and love to having something to do.

      It’s hard to wait, isn’t it!

      Hope you have a blessed weekend~
      Melanie

  5. I read this when it landed in my inbox last week and LOVED it but couldn’t comment at the time. I’m a #6 wanna be and recovering #4 🙂 Thanks for the laughs and the great reminders! So excited to share it this week.

    1. Very glad I could make you laugh, Christi!! Humor is a good thing, isn’t it!

      I like that you found yourself among the waiting types! And, glad you are recovering!

      Hope you have a blessed day today~
      Melanie

  6. This is a “get much done” waiter coming at you. 🙂 Usually, what I get done is throwing things away. Which sometimes looks like “helpful purging of stuff we didn’t need anyway) and sometimes looks like “crazed disposing of family heirlooms just because they are IN THE WAY.” Thank you for the wise and thoughtful reminder that there is purpose in the waiting. So glad to have made my way to you today via Mondays @ Soul Survival via your comment on my blog post! Thank you, Melanie!

    1. Hey Elizabeth,

      I’m a get much done person too! Oh, I like to throw things away as well! My kids get nervous when I start purging!

      Appreciate you stopping by today and leaving a kind word! You’ve encouraged me greatly!

      Hope you have a blessed day today~
      Melanie

  7. I’m definitely the “Get it done” waiter! While we waited during the adoption process, I struggled a LOT. The Lord taught me so much. You post is a beautiful reminder.
    Thanks for sharing.
    Sarah (www.sarahefrazer.com)

    1. Hey Sarah,

      Me too! Get her done!

      That waiting is hard, but I’m so glad God have you a precious baby through adoption. Other friends of mine who’ve adopted have shared the same feelings – that waiting is brutal. And, I’ll bet you did learn much!

      Seems like the painful times bring out the sweetest lessons and most amazing times with the Lord.

      You have blessed me today with your comments!
      Appreciate you,
      Melanie

  8. I am number 4. The get much done waiter! I hate to wait feels like a waste of time! I am glad we have a patient God! Loved the post:)

    1. Me too, Lisa! I am learning to be more still, but it’s a work in progress!

      And, I’m so glad we have a patient God too!

      Appreciate your kind comments today.
      You have blessed me~
      Melanie

  9. Fantastic Post Melanie! I would probably say that I used to be a #1 waiter but not I am proud to say with God’s help I am a #6 more often than not. I just don’t get that excited or anxious like I used to. I’m learning not to get upset about things that are beyond my control. I just trust Him. It has done wonders for my blood pressure;) Besides most of my family members tend to run late so I’ve just learned to accept it. Don’t need the stress.(However, waiting at Dr still makes me jittery:) Anyway, I love this insightful post about the behaviors exhibited while waiting.. Thank you for reminding us that peace is available to us via our Lord and Savior! Have a wonderful week and God bless you and yours!

    1. Hey Horace,

      Thanks for stopping by today to leave a kind word! I appreciate you and your comments.

      And, well done! Moving from 1 to 6 is awesome! And, isn’t it amazing what faith does for your blood pressure!

      By the way, I wrote a post today about the inspiring Christian women who blog. If I had added a dude, I would have added you! I appreciate your kindness~

      Blessings,
      Melanie

  10. I’d guess I’d be #4. I’ll bring a book or noodle on my smartphone. If I’m alone. If I’m at the pediatrician’s office with all of my children than I am definitely number 1 where I get the jitters and get all anxious thinking about all of the germs we are coming into contact with and will surely bring home. Haha!

  11. What a fun post! I’m a “get much done waiter.” I can’t stand to just sit. I check my phone. Write a post. Make a list. All while fidgeting. Oooh, I need to calm down a bit I think. Thanks for the smiles this morning!

  12. You are cracking me up here with your descriptions of “waiters.” I’m the busy one for sure. I’ve actually checked my phone at traffic lights. (Blushing here for shame. 🙂 ) Thanks for your wisdom regarding just being still. My life would be less stressful if I learned to just let go and enjoy doing nothing, praying, thinking, during those waiting times.

    1. Hey Betsy,
      So glad I could make you smile today! You sound like me checking that phone all the time.
      I don’t sit still well either, but I want to do better!
      Hope you have a blessed weekend (And, a restful one!)
      Appreciate you and your kind words~
      Melanie

  13. Hi Melanie!
    I’m for sure the Get-Much-Done Waiter! With a special needs kiddo and my own health issues, we spend MUCH time in doctor’s offices where I get MUCH done 🙂 God taught me so much about waiting during our adoption process as well as in the last almost 5 years since our daughter has been home. We wait in doctor’s offices and mostly, we wait to see if God will choose to heal her. Before all these life lessons, I was a terrible waiter! He’s refining me bit by bit 🙂

    Thanks, friend! I’m sharing everywhere!
    Lori

    1. Hey Lori,
      Sounds like you have learned the secret of waiting! And, if you are in doctor’s offices a lot, then you should be a pro at this!
      Thanks for sharing and being such a great partner in ministry!
      Sure am blessed by you~
      Melanie

  14. Hi Melanie. Thx so much for sharing your wisdom with me today. You’ve given me, as you always do, some good fodder to chew on!

    If I’m honest, I see ALL of them in me, depending on the situation. But if I must choose, I’d say I’m a #6. NOT that I’m saying that I wait on the Lord calmly and quietly in every situation, but that I tend to take my Kindle with me and just “veg out”, if I may. Or I’ll read one of the Bibles that I have saved on the Kindle. I guess I feel that I handle disturbing times better by praying, reading, or both. Obviously I can’t read while driving, but I CAN pray. Hmmm…..even as I’m writing this response, the song “It Pays To Pray” by Greater Vision is playing on SiriusXM radio. Guess I can’t top that, so I’ll shut up now! God’s best to you and Randy. Blessings – Bill

    1. Hey Bill,
      Thank you for stopping by to leave a comment! I appreciate you and your visit.
      I think it’s great to take your Kindle with you to help you to stay calm. And, don’t you love how music helps as well!
      None of us wait perfectly! But, we are learning, aren’t we!
      Hope you and Becky are doing well!
      Blessings to you~
      Melanie

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