Ever been in a traffic jam that’s really not convenient? Someone really pushing your buttons in that way? It happens to the best of us from time to time and we lose our patience. However, these events are normally just minor occurrences that take place in our daily lives and that we can move on from very quickly. But have you ever experienced a time when you want something to happen so badly but you seem stuck in a particular situation? That’s when you are about to learn to be patient…
What does that mean anyway? The common definition is that it is our ability ‘to accept or tolerate delays or problems without becoming annoyed or anxious’. This is true of the minor incidents I was referring to but even more so when you are enduring difficult circumstances for a long period of time, because you feel caught in an immovable cycle and start to wonder if you will ever get a break from what you are experiencing.
I used to be a very impatient person. I wanted everything to happen now because after all, if you work hard at something and take all the right steps, be it a relationship, in your career or in whatever you are trying to achieve, then it should, shouldn’t it? Only sometimes in life, we are being seriously tested and it quite simply doesn’t happen that way. ‘As it should’ doesn’t exist. We then enter a state of limbo, where we are just waiting for things to happen. And waiting… And waiting… And it all becomes a bit of an endurance and perseverance test.
And what we do is that we fight it. And the more we fight it, the less it will happen. What you resist, persists and there is just one answer, which is the one we don’t want to hear… What we really need to do, is to wait and let go, although to be honest, that’s easier said than done and actually a bit of a journey in itself. But it’s exactly about that, the journey. Sometimes, things need to happen in a certain way but it’s hard to accept at the time. It’s also about learning the lessons. We have to embrace what hurts and is making us seriously uncomfortable because everything happens for a reason, the good and the bad. But when it’s bad, we want it to go away as quickly as possible because we don’t like pain.
It’s important to understand that patience (or impatience) is a response. You need to find your triggers and who or what is making you feel that way. Why could you be experiencing this hardship and what could be the deeper meaning behind it? What other response could you have instead? More often than not, understanding this will take time, which is the last thing you want when you’re impatient.
And in time, you will resign yourself, give up on trying and let go. It is actually all about control. We want to force an outcome or maybe make something happen but we can’t. Sometimes, what we think we want isn’t what we really need or has to be delayed for other things to take place first. Control is often our response, as it makes us feel safe and in charge of our destiny, which is especially true when you are feeling stuck in your life. All you need to do is to work out the steps that you can take, regardless of outcome, and just keep going until it all falls into place, because it will… Probably when you least expect it. Trust the process.
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