They say that good things come to those who wait, but being patient is something that a lot of people are struggling with. The presence of impatience is especially apparent in today’s age where we are living in a time of instant gratification where we expect almost everything to come or happen to us instantly, that we often don’t realize that patience is quickly becoming a dying virtue.
I get that we all face struggles and difficulties in our life, and we all seem to expect that everything must be handed to us on a silver platter or with instant gratification, whether it’d be mastering a new skill immediately, getting a promotion at work, rushing into a relationship or just having your package to be instantly delivered. Whatever it is, nothing in life will ever be handed to you quickly. And regardless of our intelligence level, it takes time to develop something that you’re passionate about achieving, so learning how to be patient is one thing we all need to know how to manage.
It’s natural for many of us to want good things and want them now, but patience is and will continue to be an important part of everything you do. Being impatient with yourself and your own progress only means that you will become much more impatient in dealing with others.
So, let’s dive a little further into patience and its overall importance.
Patience is the person’s ability to wait for something in a calm manner without getting annoyed and angry in the process. It comes in three main varieties according to research by psychologist Sarah Schnitker. Schnitker’s studies indicate these varieties are the interpersonal, life hardship, and daily hassles, which are all associated with “higher levels of life satisfaction and lower levels of depression, anxiety, and psychological dysfunction.”
Patience teaches us to stay calm and collected, especially in stressful situations and in the face of frustration or adversity. We all know life is hard and often our days are full of small events that put us in a mood where we feel irritable, short-tempered, or just want to flat-out snap at people, and being impatient is one of the reasons behind it. For instance, when you’re in a meeting and someone has a report that you needed for the said meeting, but they ended up showing late. Suddenly, you start to feel as if you’re getting tense, which can trigger a sudden and uncontrollable outburst of anger that often escalates into a problematic situation. And then later, you can’t help but feel guilty when they drop into the meeting just two minutes late with coffee all over their shoes due to an accident in the hallway.
A lack of patience isn’t just damaging to yourself. When you’re losing patience, you will often be in a bad mood and impact the lives of those around you. A lack of patience can damage your relationships with many people, increase your chances of feeling stressed, and harm your reputation. That is why patience is a tough skill to master, and it takes practice and time to develop patience within yourself.
Moreover, impatience by itself is normal, but being impatient too frequently can trigger many mental health issues that can take over our lives. It can negatively impact your behavior and actions and also negatively affect your mood and energy.
People with severe impatience tend to have increased rates of anxiety as they’re consistently stressing over everyday things. Being anxious can make it hard for people to wait for something to happen and a disorder like anxiety is not something to take lightly, as it can cause you to inadvertently become unstable within yourself and sabotage your mental as well as your physical health. In fact, according to Daniel Baugher, the Dean of Graduate Programs at Pace University in New York City, being constantly “anxious” can affect your sleep, causing sleep problems such as insomnia. We all know that a lack of sleep is known to have a sweeping negative implication for our overall health, so being able to recognize the warning signs firsthand can help prevent and stop your impatience from taking hold.
By realizing how vital patience is in your life, you will gain the incentive to continue to adapt and regularly practice it. Learning how to stay calm and rational under any circumstances allows you to acknowledge any situation that comes your way and effectively control yourself.
Patience, like any other, is also a skill that almost everyone could improve upon. It requires time and practice to develop and be more patient towards yourself, others, and situations you encounter, but you must have to start with the small steps in doing so.
There are many ways to practice patience, but it is simply up to you to decide the steps you’re going to take and the strategies you’re going to make. The best way to practice patience is to begin by becoming aware of what triggers you to lose your patience, whether it is when you’re waiting for a delayed meal in a restaurant or your inability to quickly progress in a particular skill. Then start practicing making yourself wait. Go ahead and practice something small, like waiting a few extra minutes for a train to come in, etc. When you’re starting to get irritable, stressed, and impatient, you can also try to practice some simple relaxation techniques such as deep breathing, as it can signal your nervous system to calm down.
To be happier in the future, teach yourself how to be patient. You also have to understand that even if it seems slow, it is okay to wait. No new skill is gained overnight, and patience will be no different.
You can expect to strive for peace of mind as you practice patience, or you can stay as you are and continue to view things in a frustrated manner and always feel annoyed and upset at your impatience.
Are you ready to challenge yourself to embrace patience to overhaul your life and relations