30 Aug The Power of Patience
We've all lost our patience at one point, or another. Someone makes us late; people are too slow; things aren't happing as quickly as we think they should, all of these things can cause us to lose our patience. And while our reactions may seem justified at the time, the truth is, that being impatient can mess up our relationships with others.
"Patient people are less stressed as they go through life."
I used to be a bundle of stress & anxiety walking around. I was always on my phone, "working," stressed about God knows what, and pretty overwhelmed. I had allowed my business to take over my life. I was doing most of the work myself, because I was such a control freak I didn't trust anyone to do it "correctly."
When it was brought to my attention, I immediately made some changes and continue to practice my patience. Through this journey I did a ton of research on how to adjust my mind over matter and why people behave the way they do.
Patient people are less stressed as they go through life. They aren't ruffled by little things and can cope with situations easier than those who lack. When we're patient, we experience feelings of calm and peacefulness. We aren't as easily angered or stressed by situations, but rather are able to take them in stride. When we're caught in traffic, we don’t yell and rage, but rather accept our fate and remain calm for the rest of our journey.
I can personally attest to this. Since implementing this tips my stress meter has gone way down and my happiness meter is at an all time high.
The truth is, patience is a skill. It's not something we're innately born with, but rather something we cultivate over time.
When we become impatient, our body starts to stress. As a result, stress hormones are released, and we experience physical symptoms. Our chests may feel tight; our breathing might increase; our muscles might tense, and we may experience feelings of anxiety or nervousness. Once we recognize all of these physical manifestations as symptoms of impatience, we can begin to recognize what is occurring.
Before you can work on improving your patience, it is important to identify what makes you impatient.
- Being Stuck in Traffic
- A Family Member not Cleaning up Their Mess
- A Child Throwing a Tantrum
- co-worker being difficult
Check out my guide below to discovering your triggers.
Check out these strategies for improving your patience:
- Delegate – One reason people become impatient is that they over commit themselves, and therefore feel rushed or stressed to get things done. Delegating tasks that are not essential to complete yourself can be a great way of reducing stress and helping you keep you cool
- Take a Moment – When you start to feel yourself becoming impatient, take a few movements to calm down. Try taking a few deep breaths, sitting in a quiet place, or closing your eyes. Taking a few moments to breathe can help you keep control and stop you from losing your patience.
- Revisit You To-Do List – Make sure your to-do list is actually feasible. Are there too many things to accomplish on a particular day? One way to help fix your to-do list is to spread your tasks out over a longer period of time. While, it would be nice to get all your errands done on Saturday, it might be less stressful to break them up over the entire weekend.
- Allow yourself to be in the Moment – At a certain point, whatever is making you impatient has already happened, and there is nothing you can do about it. You may be stuck in traffic; you may be late to a meeting. Or maybe your child is throwing the world’s most epic tantrum on the street. Now that the thing has already happened, there is not sense fighting it. You are here; this is happening, find a way to deal with it. Allowing yourself to be in the moment, as opposed to wishing things were different, will help you accept what is happening and finally relax. Acceptance is the first step to overcoming impatience.
- Try to See the Big Picture – it is important to remember that what is causing you to lose your patience is probably not that big a deal in the grand scheme of things. Focus on what actually matters, as opposed to what you don’t like about the situation. For example, if you find yourself losing your patience because you are stuck in traffic. Focus on the fact that the most important thing is that you arrive at your destination safely, not that you arrive there quickly or even on time. When you start to focus on what actually matters, you are better able to remain calm and not lose your patience.
- Remember Sometimes Things can’t be Rushed – Often we lose our patience when we want something done now. But in reality, some things just take time. No matter how much you want something accomplished, sometimes you cannot make it go any faster. It is important to learn to accept this and not let it get you too rattled.
- Try to Just Let It Go – Now this is definitely easier said than done. But one strategy is when you feel yourself becoming impatient, just let it go. Recognize that losing your patience will not accomplish anything, and try to remain calm. This may take some practice, but overtime you will begin to feel yourself becoming a more and more patient person.