It’s interesting to observe from afar how people in a waiting “mode” contend with and manage their time. Doctors’ or dentists’ offices are often back-logged if the appointments are running behind; hospital waiting rooms have both tolerant non-complainers and impatient pacers – the TV may be too loud or cellphones not on Silent mode.
Our strength of character and being able to put things into proper context is a real bonus when it comes to clock-watching. Thumbing through a magazine – if you can find one nowadays in public waiting spaces – or coaxing crossword clues to fit the puzzle can help take one’s mind off the obvious. New e-reader devices are popular instead of lugging around a book. Games on a hand-held device might be fun – if the volume is not on to disrupt others nearby.
One long-lost activity that created a special bond between people is the practice of note or letter writing, sometimes to an old-fashioned “pen-pal”! I always carry several notecards and pre-addressed, stamped envelopes with me – my profession as a REALTOR® creates valuable opportunities to “keep in touch”. Clients love the contact and there’s no more pleasant a surprise than to receive a handwritten note!
Transportation delays, the advent of newborns, the heartaches of palliative situations or other circumstances can actually be opportunities to be creative, think innovative thoughts and even brainstorm project ideas. You can light up a room for others by demonstrating that one of the most unfulfilling exercises is, simply, clock watching.