Everyone knows patience is the true virtue and yet not many can master the art of patience. I for one am not a patient person. It never came naturally to me. Ever since I was little I always rushed my way through everything. I never enjoyed slow-paced things. Even music perhaps, now that I think about it I can't recall times I have enjoyed slow music. See, little things like these help you understand who you are and what areas of life do you need a little working on.
24 years of being an impatient person and I never saw my lack of patience as a big problem per se. Yes, I was never calm about waiting for a friend or delayed flights. Until 2 years back I'd be the most grumpy and frustrated person if stuck in traffic or at airports. What changed? I noticed patient people are a lot more at peace with themselves no matter where they are and what's happening around them.
That intrigued me, something about looking at them was so soothing I knew I wanted that. 1 minute less spent in being regretful about where I am is 1 more minute of enjoying myself. How could I not want that?
It's not something that happens overnight, I've been working on it for 2 years and I am not even halfway there.
While it's not exactly easy, it isn't extremely difficult either.
5 simple things to practice for being a patient person:
1. Pay close attention to how you feel
Lashing out and letting out how you feel in that very instant is the easiest thing you'll ever do. Holding back and taking some time to read your feelings carefully is a rather difficult task. Except for, it's only one decision away. It's only a second when you make up your mind to be all over the place with your emotions or choose to be calm and composed.
2. Promise productivity to yourself
Next time you're stuck at an airport/traffic or in a queue, use that time to do things you can instead of cursing and being grumpy. Simple things like making a travel plan your notepad, researching about a subject you care about, watching an episode of your favorite show on your phone, replying to those long-ignored messages, online shopping, updating your music library, there's a lot you can do on the gadgets you carry around with you.
If you're not a person who likes to do so many things, just pay a little attention to your thoughts and understand what they're trying to say to you. You know it's something that helps in the long run!
3. Make peace with uncomfortable situations
This is the hardest thing to do. Imagine every fiber of your body is asking you to say no to a social event but you're going to say a yes anyway? It's not because can't say no or you've major FOMO issues. It's simply because once in a while you need to step out of your comfort zone and do things that help you expand as a person. That's another thing you didn't know you could do!
Breathe mindfully. Inhale till the count of three and exhale till the count of three. Needless to say, this will automatically help you relax and is one of the easiest and the most underrated medium to practice the art of patience.
5. Think about the consequences
Like I mentioned earliest, lashing out is one of the easiest things you'll ever do while having control over your emotions is one of the hardest personal milestones you can achieve. But like all hard work bears sweet fruits, this isn't very different. Think through the consequences of your actions out of natural impulse. Will you regret it? If there's the slightest chance that you'll have to apologize for something you said or did, you rather spare yourself the drama and let it go already!
Image Source: Photo by Jordi Zamora on Unsplash