When we plant a garden, we know that what we sow is what we will eventually reap, but we must also be conscious of the fact that this is not an endeavor that provides instant gratification. There is, inherently, a certain amount of waiting involved, and therefore, a certain amount of patience is necessary.
There are many life choices like this – when you sow seeds in a garden, when you take on responsibility for raising a child, when you invest your money in the stock market, you are signing on for a period of waiting before your efforts and energies evidence results. We can try to rush many elements in our lives (faster internet, anyone?), but there are some things that simply take time. Anything that results in growth requires of us a long-term investment, and a great amount of patience.
There is a magnet on my refrigerator which reads: “(S)he who knows patience knows peace.” I have found this to be true, and I keep it there as a reminder for myself when I begin to lose patience with any given circumstance. It sometimes helps me to remember that – like worry – impatience is nothing but wasted energy. This is especially significant when the situation I am facing is not something that I have planned in advance, or that I expect will have a rewarding outcome at its conclusion. (Sitting in traffic comes to mind, here.) In these instances, I try mightily to retain perspective, clear my mind, and – most importantly – breathe. When I can focus on the joy of those in-between moments (yes, even when I’m running late), letting go of any anxiety becomes so much easier. In this way, I can cultivate patience as a skill, and draw upon it whenever my peace is threatened.
What causes you to lose patience, and how can you shift your perspective to allow events to unfold in their own time?
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