In the Trenches: Clock Watching

Wall clock on a white wall

As you all know, and as I also know, I do not do well with radio silence. I don’t know many people who can put their head down and ignore the ‘what if’ lingering on the horizon.
However, I have had lessons in this skill in my life. Quite a few, to be perfectly honest, possibly even more than I wanted, but I don’t make the rules. What I have learned is two-fold.
First off, if you aren’t doing something for the love of it, but only for the recognition, then you are never going to be satisfied. And it’s also likely that you won’t be recognized either. Why? Because someone who loves the ‘whateveritis’ is going to be far more excited, knowledgeable, and likely skilled at the thing than you are. So, don’t chase glory. It’s the short way to feeling unfulfilled and resentful.
Secondly, waiting is wasted time. We all have limited time on this rock, and if you spend it waiting for someone to give you a pat on the head, you’re likely going to wait a really long time. And, you won’t be doing the thing that might one day get you noticed. And I don’t know anyone who can genuinely say, ‘I like to wait. Yes, a nice long wait with absolutely no progress is just the thing to make my day.’
Just to be clear, there is no getting through life without having to wait for things. The skill to learn is enjoying the wait and making that time productive.
Have any of you ever, well probably not, I am a bit of a dinosaur, anyway, have you ever seen someone knitting while they are standing in line? Or waiting for a bus? This was a common sight in Britain when my mother was living there. I still managed to see some of the older women doing this when I visited in the 80s. And a good friend, who visited in the 00s, was knitting as she waited for a bus. She overheard two older women behind her talking, and one said, “Bets, she’s putting us to shame.”
I’m not advocating that you take up knitting or stand around waiting for random buses. The point to all this is there are times in your life when the act of waiting will be unavoidable. Learn something, do something, head down, and work on your craft. Don’t just sit there staring at the clock and the proverbial door. If opportunity is going to show up, it will do so in its own time.

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