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Worth the Wait? How to Make the Most of Sitting in the Doctor's Waiting Room

Updated on September 30, 2013

One of life's biggest aggravations for me is waiting in the doctor's office. I love my doctor and wouldn't go anywhere else for my personal care but waiting for an hour just to go back to one of the rooms can be a bit much for me sometimes. Oh, I know, emergencies can't be helped and there are usually people who are a lot sicker than I am. That doesn't mean I have to like it.

After many years of practice I have an arsenal of things to do to make the most of the doctor's office wait.

1. Bring a book/e-reader/magazine to read. Since I love to read, this is usually my first defense against the wait. I always have a book with me. The magazines in the waiting room are usually pretty good but I don't want to touch these germ-ridden pages that have been perused by who knows how many sickly people. Go ahead if you're desperate but be sure to wash your hands afterward.

2. My second defense is to always carry a small pad of paper or journal and a pen in my purse. They have a multitude of uses. Write out your grocery list for the next week.

3. Balance your checkbook. If you don't have a calculator with you, this will have the added advantage of occupying your brain for awhile.

4. Write a hub like I did!

5. Write a letter (yes, by hand) or thank you note that you've been putting off.

6. Clean out your purse or wallet of trash. Do an inventory.

7. Make a to-do list for the day, week or month.

8. Close your eyes and meditate.

9. Write a list of things you want to discuss with the doctor, namely the wait time in the office.

10. Plan the menu for the next week or your next party.

11. Text a friend. If you must speak on the phone, step out of the office as a courtesy to others.

12. Get caught up on Facebook.

13. Teachers: Grade those papers, write those lesson plans, average those grades!

14. Bring your knitting, crocheting or other needlework.

15. Ladies: Do Kegel exercises. No one will ever know!

Finding something to pass the time really will make the wait seem shorter (even though it isn't)!

Do you use any of the above tips to help pass the time waiting in the doctor's office?

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  • europewalker profile image


    8 years ago

    I always have a book with me when I go somewhere. You just never know how long you have to wait, plus I am short on patience and I need something to occupy me.

  • Esmeowl12 profile imageAUTHOR

    Cindy A Johnson 

    8 years ago from Sevierville, TN

    I know, angela p. Like our time is not as valuable as the dr.'s time. Hmph.

  • angela p profile image

    angela p 

    8 years ago from Richmond, Virginia

    Why is it that we have to wait for an hour BUT if we are late we are told that the doctor can not see us or charged a late fee? I have been told that when only 10 minutes late when I usually wait an hour to see the doctor. Hmm.

  • Esmeowl12 profile imageAUTHOR

    Cindy A Johnson 

    8 years ago from Sevierville, TN

    Thanks, grinnin1! Glad you liked it!

  • grinnin1 profile image


    8 years ago from st louis,mo

    Great hub. I do like the idea of hub writing... ideas come at odd times like the doc's office(while doing kegals)- it's just remembering the paper and pen..

  • Esmeowl12 profile imageAUTHOR

    Cindy A Johnson 

    8 years ago from Sevierville, TN

    If only I could nap in the dr.'s office! That would be great, JY3502!

  • JY3502 profile image

    John Young 

    8 years ago from Florence, South Carolina

    Esmeowl12, good hub. Myself, I usually just take a nap. LOL

  • Esmeowl12 profile imageAUTHOR

    Cindy A Johnson 

    8 years ago from Sevierville, TN

    Thanks for your comments, Hyphenbird, Gypsy, Movie Master & Sunshine. Great ideas.

  • Sunshine625 profile image

    Linda Bilyeu 

    8 years ago from Orlando, FL

    Good advice! What I do to avoid the wait is schedule my appointments for first one in the morning or first appointment after their lunch break. That works out most of the time. It's also nice that most doctors now have free wifi! :)

  • Movie Master profile image

    Movie Master 

    8 years ago from United Kingdom

    Some great advice, how I hate the waiting room!

    But what a good place to write a hub:-)

    Thanks for sharing.

  • Gypsy Rose Lee profile image

    Gypsy Rose Lee 

    8 years ago from Daytona Beach, Florida

    I remember one fall afternoon many years ago now. I went to my doctor because I had a bad cold and a cough. However he had had several emergencies to attend to and the nurse warned me it would be awhile. So there I sat reading a novel. I got engrossed in the book and when I looked up it was pitch black outside and snowing hard. The doctor finally checked me out but when I got home I was down with the flu. Now I would probably bring a laptop with me to a doctor's office.

  • Hyphenbird profile image

    Brenda Barnes 

    8 years ago from America-Broken But Still Beautiful

    Great advice Esmeowl. I am one of those who refuse to wait unless the doctor has been called away on an emergency. I wait 20 minutes then go to the window. If the wait is going to drag on for hours, I tell them I will just leave. We are blessed without doctor's office though. We have only had to wait, I think twice.

    Great Hub with wonderful suggestions to pass the time.


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