How to Take the ‘Suck’ out of Your Time

Waiting sucks. Or at least we think it to be a minor annoyance. While waiting can offer us the opportunity to savor, you task-minded folks may appreciate these tips for those places when hanging around feels more like a time drain than a dance!

Doctor’s office

Bring along thank-you and birthday cards. Write them while you are waiting.


Download a few job-related podcasts. Listen to them onto your iPod while you’re waiting in line. Take notes until your number is called.

Movie theater allows you to purchase tickets for participating theaters in advance.

While you wait, bring along that magazine you never seem to find time to read. Flip through it before the lights go down. If you’re with children, play a word association game. Bring your own candy. It saves time and money!

Grocery store

Make a list. Even if you forget it, try to recreate it before entering the store. Be strategic. Most fattening foods are in the middle aisles so steer clear of them. Circle the store once, going down only those aisles that warehouse the goods you need.

Bank & post office

Practice deep breathing. As you wait in line, take in a long, five-count breath. Breathe out for six. Repeat several times.

Outlet stores

Go on an off-day (middle of the week is often good). Avoid long holiday weekend visits. Grab as much as you can without exceeding the allowed limit of items to make the dressing room wait worth it. Tag team with a girlfriend so she can bring you the appropriate garment size and color. Besides, what’s better than girl time at the mall?

Theme parks

Google it before you go. Make a list of the must-do rides and be flexible on all the rest. Bring a few snacks in your bag so you’re not spending half your day at the concession stand line. Be mindful of holidays and peak times. Avoid them if at all possible.


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1 Comment

  1. Gary Ellenbolt

    June 2, 2010 at 11:39 am

    I once lived and worked in Sioux City, Iowa–where the city charter mandates that every homebound commuter must be stopped either by a string of mis-timed stoplights on Hamilton Boulevard, or by one or more coal trains on their way to Port Neal Station. I created a game for such times, where I would find five things about that area I had never seen before. It may have been as simple as the PT Cruiser Convertable with Idaho plates parked in front of Carlos O’Kelleys, but if I could get to five, I could call it a win and go home quite a bit less irritated at the interruption.

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