“Why is patience…

“Why is patience so important? Because it makes us pay attention.” ~ Paulo Coelho

If I could pick 100 words to describe me, “patience” wouldn’t even make the list at #99.  It would, however, make the top of my list for the words that describe my weaknesses.

Excuse:

I don’t have time to be patient.  We are living in a world where we want instant answers (because our phone notifies us every time anyone wants anything from us).  We are plugged in at all times. Work bleeds into our personal time because we are expected to provide immediate responses. As a result, we feel more stressed which, in turn, causes even more impatience.  It’s a vicious cycle and I just can’t seem stop.

Truth:

I am not naturally patient. Although I try consistently to be so, my attempts seem to backfire more frequently than succeed. I have gotten into many fights, made my far share of mistakes and lost friendships because of my inability to be patient. Paulo Coelho’s quote above makes me wonder if I should look at my patience deficiency in a different light – as an opportunity to (date I say it) grow . I am getting too old to continually say, “I’m sorry,” and then commit the same blunder in less than 24 hours. Now is the time to improve. And I don’t think I have to wait until I have children to acquire patience. I would like to think I have the willpower already somewhere buried in me.

Excuse:

Only I know how to do things right. I can’t rely on anyone else to get the job done.

Truth:

Sometimes we like to think we are this self-important, but maybe the lesson lies in taking the time to breathe, let someone figure things out so that in the future there can be more collaboration. This is especially challenging at work when it comes to delegating. I find that because of my impatience I tend to do it all, overwork and then feel overwhelmed with stress. It’s astonishing what you can accomplish if you trust in people. Contrary to popular belief, we are not super human and no technological device can make us work at warp speed.

Excuse:

I give up. This is never going to get done or this is never going to happen. I might as well call it quits.

Truth:

That’s the easy way out. True strength is comprised of patience and never losing hope. True strength is also not being pessimistic and infecting those around us with this negativity. Many of us wish we could have our dreams fulfilled now (like, right  this moment), but is that really the point? Maybe there is beauty in sitting in that waiting room and looking around you. Did you know that the person next to you is also going through similar struggles like you? We are not alone. We can teach ourselves to step away from today’s rat race and just be. We might realize that we are already lucky in what we have.  We may never quench this insatiable desire to want more. What if happiness is already inside of you and patience is the key to uncovering it?

I need to reevaluate my outlook on life’s challenges. It’s not a simple undertaking, but it is certainly something worth paying attention to before the years pass us by. If not now, when?