Your one foot is tapping and the other one is probably falling asleep. Whether it's waiting in a government office, standing in a line for lunch or even sitting in a waiting area, long wait times — especially if you're an impatient person — can feel like torture.
Writer Gretchen Rubin, when referring to David Maister's report on the psychology of waiting, says there are several factors that can make wait times seem longer than they actually are.
Maiser and Rubin argue that distractions, anxiety and the value of a service will dictate how impatiently or calm one may react while waiting in line. While waiting for a doctor during an emergency, one will actually feel calmer than waiting for a store clerk at the mall and people are less likely to be impatient if someone tells them a doctor will be with them shortly, she adds.
And yet, even when we know we're getting a stamp on our passports or a seat on that bus, standing or sitting around adds levels of stress, boredom and nagging, according to writer Alex Stone. What's even worse is that some wait times are slowly taking a toll on our health.
One study found that vehicle exhaust fumes during traffic jams can lead to brain cell damage and be a risk factor for autism, according to the Washington Journal. And even though most health experts prefer people standing all day to sitting, standing for a long period of time can also increase the risk of carotid atherosclerosis (thickening of artery walls) and in general is more exhausting for our bodies to handle, according to Time.
And some wait times are longer than others. In 2011, the median wait time for surgery in Canada was 19 weeks — a jump from 18.2 weeks in 2010, according to CTV News.
Of course there are also waiting periods that are completely voluntary. New game releases, movie previews or concert tickets have people waiting for hours and sometimes even days. The Atlantic reported that some people even waited in line for 10 days for new iPhone in 2011.
What's the longest time you had to wait in line (involuntarily, of course)? Let us know in the comments below:
RELATED: Here are 6 ways to get good posture and 4 exercises you can try in your cubicle or waiting area (if you're brave enough) in 20 minutes:
Get A Ball
Try replacing your office chair with a stability ball, says chiropractor Dr. Craig McNamee. Forcing yourself to balance on a ball can increase core activation and improve your overall posture.
The best way to improve your backside is by actually standing up and taking a break. McNamee says you should get up every 20 minutes and open up your chest and stretch.
Keep A Band At Your Desk
No gym close by? Don't worry. McNamee suggests keeping a resistance band in your desk drawer and perform chest pulls while standing up. This will keep your blood pumping all day.
Competitive? McNamee recommends wearing a pedometer and challenging yourself to walk at least 10,000 steps a day. Not only will this straighten up your form, it will boost your metabolism and improve your mood.
McNamee suggests drinking at least eight cups of water a day while sitting at your desk. (Just think of it has trying to finish one cup per hour). "Some researchers believe coffee dehydrates you, so for every cup of coffee offset it with at least one more cup of water," he says.
Try to avoid those company donuts -- at least for the majority of the week. Snacking on fruits, vegetables and other foods that are high in fibre and protein will keep your energy levels up during the day.
EXERCISE: Office Chair Squats
Try doing squats directly into your office chair to work your core and posture. Try five sets at 30 seconds each.
EXERCISE: Wall Push Ups
If you feel a little awkward breaking out into push ups on the company floor, find a flat wall and try five sets at 30 seconds each.
EXERCISE: Chair Tricep Dips
Just like this photo, grab a hold of your chair's arms and dip down to the floor without having your bottom touch the floor. This exercise will workout your triceps and core. Try five sets at 30 seconds each.
EXERCISE: Front Planks
Yes, we know this may be seem embarrassing in front of a crowd, but finding an empty room or even the kitchen area of your office will work for planks. Again, planks can work your core and burn fat. Try five sets at 30 seconds each.
Earlier on HuffPost: