what the wait is worth

Remember that Heinz ketchup commercial (anticipation…anticipa-a-tion…it’s making me wait)?  It was all about something that was “worth the wait.”  For as long as I can remember, I have always enjoyed looking forward to something almost as much as the thing itself (that I was looking forward to).  

The wait itself was even more exciting especially if I knew how much I would enjoy the thing I was waiting for.  And, ironically, the more I wanted it, the longer the wait seemed to last (so good thing I enjoyed it, huh?). 

Examples of the worth of the wait include studies that show that anticipation of sleep benefits our heart more than sleep actually does (anticipation of sleep benefits heart - http://www.jyi.org/news/nb.php?id=1307), and that thinking about revenge stimulates the brain but that following through doesn’t improve mood (revenge may be all in the anticipation - http://www.latimes.com/health/la-he-revenge-20101018,0,2305011.story)… and that part of the value of a vacation (or other enjoyable experience) is looking forward to it - http://www.goodhousekeeping.com/health/wellness/advice/a24232/waiting-happiness/

I found the following way of describing anticipation in Wikipedia: “ being enthusiastic, an emotion involving … in considering some expected or longed-for good event, or irritation at having to wait. A name for pleasured anticipation is excitement.  Anticipation can be shown in many ways; for example, some people seem to smile uncontrollably during this period, …. It is not uncommon for the brain to be so focused on an event, that the body is affected in such a way…” 

In today’s world of instant gratification and convenience, we are often too impatient to wait for anything.  Have we lost something as a result?  If we lose the wait, what is left?  It's like the holidays...if every day was a holiday, it would get pretty boring...part of makes a holiday is that it is a break from the norm AND, as a result, we can have fun looking forward to it.

Try it more often...give yourself or someone else something you know they will anticipate, look forward to.  And don’t just make it worth the wait, make the wait worth something.

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Tanya Leake

Tanya Leake is the founder of EmBODY WELL and is an American Council on Exercise (ACE) certified health coach, group fitness instructor, specializing in Zumba, dance fitness and sculpt.  She teaches a variety of modes of dance, is certified as an Advanced Sports and Exercise Nutritional Advisor, with additional certifications in Natural Health Fundamentals, Behavior Change and Nutrition Therapy.  She is also a certified instructor for Oldways’ “A Taste of African Heritage” health through heritage program.   She brings a wealth of knowledge from a holistic perspective on health and well-being.