What to do while you’re waiting

Many people have to wait a long time for something to happen. Tom Petty was right: The waiting is the hardest part. It’s easy to become impatient, especially when we cannot see any signs that anything is happening. It’s like the seed germinating within the earth. Although there may be millions of chemical reactions going on beneath the surface, from topside, the soil resembles a mute brown plane, keeping its own counsel.


The urge to dig up the seed to check on its progress is almost overwhelming, and yet, in order for the seed to bear fruit, we must trust that the process is on schedule. If we have chosen the correct soil for the seed, watered it properly and fertilized it accordingly, then we must have faith that something will happen.

As an example,  we awarded a car to a woman who epitomizes the example of doing the work and then waiting.

“Everything you want is out there waiting for you to ask. Everything you want also wants you. But you have to take action to get it.” ~ Jules Renard

Eight months ago, she was living in a homeless shelter with her children. She wanted a better life for herself and her children. We, as a nonprofit, wanted to give it to her. But in order for the transfer to happen, she needed to first decide that she wanted to move forward and then take steps toward achieving it.

Reaching out to a caseworker. Determining the correct steps to getting her GED. Fulfilling obligations to secure an apartment. Achieving these goals constituted a symbiotic relationship between asking and effort. It’s difficult to articulate, and I’m not sure that I’m doing a very good job of it. It’s not a matter of “deserving.” It’s a matter of realizing.

Once we realize ourselves, we begin to see ourselves as worthy. And from that sense of worthiness, concrete and tangible results flow.

“Maturity includes the recognition that no one is going to see anything in us that we don’t see in ourselves. Stop waiting for a producer. Produce yourself.” ~ Marianne Williamson

Our applicant had to do the heavy lifting of overcoming her own inertia, developing clarity about the things she wanted and then taking action to bring about the changes she wished to see in her life. Even the most insightful and intelligent among us cannot begin to presume what another wants for him or herself.  Each of us has the responsibility of seeking that kernel of truth for himself or herself.

“It is a great piece of skill to know how to guide your luck even while waiting for it.” ~ Baltasar Gracian

Once you have an inkling of what you want, you must seek out the conditions and people where you’ll have a greater chance of coming into contact with others from whom you can learn and grow.

  • Research the job or industry you would like to enter
  • Read about people who have succeeded in your chosen field
  • Apply for internships or educational opportunities that put you in the path of those who can help you
  • Do the work

Ultimately, you must also be willing to act when the opportunity for which you have been waiting presents itself. You must trust that your time spent preparing has been effective.

“One of the best ways you can thank someone for giving you a chance is to take it.” ~ Molly Cantrell-Kraig

When have you had to wait for something? How did it pan out? Were you able to pay it forward?


Molly Cantrell-Kraig is a woman with drive. Possessing an innate sense of purpose and a pragmatic, solution-based approach to empowering people, she fused these two traits in order to establish Women With Drive Foundation. Based upon its founder’s personal history, Women With Drive Foundation is a means through which Cantrell-Kraig may effect change on both a micro and macro level. By providing women with something as essential as personal transportation in order to transition them from poverty to prosperity, she, through Women With Drive Foundation, seeks to empower women to help them help themselves. Through this action, the individual applicant benefits, as does society as a whole. Follow Molly on twitter as @mckra1g or @WWDr1ve(Women With Drive Foundation) or “Like” us on facebook.


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