“The secret of patience, is to do something else in the meantime”
Croft M. Pentz
When you set your sights on something and you have done everything you can to bring it into reality then, at some stage, you must let go all the planning and wait….and wait….and wait!
My uncle told me years ago that he had got to the stage where he was getting too impatient to read a book that didn’t capture his imagination within the first chapter. At the time, I thought he was crazy. I was 15 and just discovering all the Thomas Hardy books. I enjoyed the hunt for his more obscure works. With hindsight, I now get what he means. The older I get, the less time I have to waste on trivia. However, I still get a thrill out of discovering new writers or their use of the English language. I don’t think, I will ever lose my inquisitive mind.
Maybe that’s the secret, always to maintain that sense of wonderment and to get comfortable with not having to control or indeed know the outcome. I remember someone saying to me, it’s like sitting in a restaurant. You examine the menu, pick out a meal and let go in trust. You don’t keep going into the kitchen to check how the chef is progressing with your meal!
Tips on developing patience:
- Stand perfectly still on one leg for a long period of time – just kidding! But it did get your attention!
- OK, so part of the sentence above is useful, slow down
- In an age where everything is about instant gratification, take a step back and reflect on this expectation.
- If you find yourself getting irritated, ask yourself why. So, the car in front is going a little slow, the queue is moving too slowly, so what!
- Let go your need to control everything. Sooner or later, you will realize that total control is a figment of your imagination.
- Remember, that we are unique and not everyone works to our time scale or even our way of doing things. Vive la différence!
- Impatience can come from the age of technology in which we find ourselves. If we send a WhatsApp, we expect an instant reply. Try turning your phone on silent for a while. We have become like Pavlov’s dog, constantly in a state of alert and expectation.
- Take back control. The more you practice, the more you will develop healthier habits.
- Take up a hobby/past time for which patience is a prerequisite. When I was a teenager, I used to go fishing with my uncles. I would wait for hours on the riverbank, waiting for the bubble to bob down….never happened (except when it snagged on something), but I always enjoyed the wait.
- Learn to laugh at yourself and your shortcomings and indeed the shortcomings of others. As Wilde says, “Life is too important to be taken seriously”
- Paradigm shift. What do I mean? Simply this, a few years ago, I heard about a man who was travelling on the London underground. At one stop, a father and his 2 young boisterous children boarded. The kids ran up and down the carriage irritating the passenger whose face must have reflected his thoughts. The father apologized profusely saying that they had all just come from the hospital where they had paid a visit to their mum who was in a coma after a car accident. We never really know another’s story, do we?
Do you share the Heron’s ability to stand still and await your outcome? The bigger the prize, the longer the wait…….but perhaps it will have been worthwhile! Just saying!