Lifestyle · Mental Health

Think About It: The Pain of Waiting

As I’m writing this, I’m in a waiting stage in my life. Where I’m waiting to start a new chapter that hasn’t yet begun. This new chapter is uncertain, though hopefully exciting. And it is the waiting that is the hard part, really. It is the waiting that is giving me anxiety.

Now for me, I get anxious a lot more before an event than I do at said event. I think this is because of the oh-so-easy overthinking and imagining that an anxious mind can do. Where you imagine scenarios and outcomes that could be undesirable. Of course – well, usually – the event itself doesn’t go how you imagined and more often than not, it goes just fine or even great!

The same can be true with new life chapters, except, you just don’t know yet…


Schrodinger’s Cat

Let’s talk about the Thought Experiment Schrodinger’s Cat.

In simple terms, Schrödinger stated that if you place a cat and something that could kill the cat (a radioactive atom) in a box and sealed it, you would not know if the cat was dead or alive until you opened the box, so that until the box was opened, the cat was (in a sense) both “dead and alive”.

To wrap it up – and it really doesn’t matter what version of this idea you’ve heard before – it just means that in life, there are unknown outcomes in some situations. That two things can be true at once until you take a step to uncover the answer. Sometimes, too, the act of taking the step causes the outcome to occur, though we have no way to know that for sure.

So, it is both true, as of now in the waiting stage of my life, that I will do XYZ and it will go great and I’ll be happy with the choice; and it’s also true that I will do XYZ and hate it and be totally unhappy!

I can’t know the answer, though, unless I do the thing.


If you, like me, are in an in-between stage of your life where you’re not here or there yet. Where you’re waiting for something to start or end or result in something, then try to breathe through it. No amount of thinking, controlling, or sinking into negativity will alter the outcome. The only thing we can do is do the thing and see what happens.

Seeing life as an experiment helps us to take it all less seriously. To simply run with an idea or theory with curiosity and see what happens. From there, we have the data to inform us of what works and what doesn’t. And then, we just make the next move and do the next experiment.

Simple, right?

Waiting sucks, but we can’t wait forever. Change happens, things end and begin, and we just have to breathe, do our best, and adapt as we go.


Other ideas about waiting:

  • Don’t wait too long
  • Don’t wait for your life (or a situation) to fix itself
  • Don’t get into the habit of waiting for some future better life where you will be happy and things will be easy
  • Don’t voluntarily wait too much in life, otherwise, you’re causing your own pain


Good luck x




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