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How to Wait in Line Patiently

Updated on August 9, 2011
Waiting in Line
Waiting in Line | Source

Many times you are required to wait in line, or queue as the British say. Because impatience causes stress, your health would be better served if you could wait in line patiently by using the time productively. Here’s how to train yourself to wait in line patiently.

Plan Ahead

When you know you might have to wait somewhere for a minute or more take a small notebook and pen with you. Then you’ll be able to wait in line patiently as you use the time to make a to-do list, shopping list, gift list, or just generate ideas for work or home projects.

List All the Situations That Require You to Wait

These might include waits at medical and dental offices, in checkout lines at stores, at the post office, at a restaurant waiting to be served, while commuting (as long as you are not driving!), and so on. Then think about how you can best use the time to help you wait in line patiently for a variety of situations.

Make It a Habit to Always Have Pen and Paper with You

Habits help us be more productive. So every day for three months take your pen and notebook out with you whenever you leave home. After three months it will have become an ingrained habit and you will find yourself able to wait in line patiently almost no matter what the situation is.

Practice Making Lists

The better able you are to write down a list of to-do’s or ideas, the more productive you’ll be and the easier it will be for you to wait in line patiently. So practice using a pen and notebook to record ideas or to make plans during both short and long waits.

Monitor Your Progress

During the first few months of your new waiting strategy, note and record any increases in your patience and in your daily productivity. If you have taken this advice seriously and implemented it regularly, you should see significant improvements in both your productivity and in your ability to wait patiently.

For whatever reason, some people may have trouble getting in the habit of writing things down. An alternative strategy would be to always have a good book with you to read during waits. If you are accompanied by another person during a wait, invite them to do the same as you are if you have trouble with conversation in such situations. (There may be a lack of privacy for example.) Let them know that you are not being rude!


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    • Phil Plasma profile image

      Phil Plasma 

      6 years ago from Montreal, Quebec

      I don't normally have too much trouble being patient in a queue, however, having pen and paper sounds like a great idea I should keep in mind. Voted up and useful.

    • KevinC9998 profile image


      6 years ago

      This was a very useful hub. Voted up. Thanks

    • moiragallaga profile image

      Moira Garcia Gallaga 

      6 years ago from Lisbon, Portugal

      Very useful hub. Patience is a concept I constantly struggle with, but those are good ideas to help productively pass the time while waiting or in line. The smart phones nowadays also is a useful tool, preferably if its only being used for browsing. Sometimes, it gets annoying when you're in line and someone behind you is talking loudly on his celphone oblivious of the fact he's in a public place.

    • MsDora profile image

      Dora Weithers 

      6 years ago from The Caribbean

      Good suggestions. What about a Suduko book and pencil?

    • Ruchira profile image


      6 years ago from United States

      liked your list but these days with most people possessing a smart phone...they are either browsing through their emails or sites which need attention ;)

      Good topic to hub on...voted up!!


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