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Wednesday, June 25, 2008

Patience is a Virtue

Patience comes in many forms. Patience as you wait in line or are stuck in traffic, patience when your computer or another item doesn't quite "work" the way you need it to, patience when you feel you are not being understood by someone else, patience with your children, patience when you are waiting for something you want to manifest and the most important of all is...patience with yourself. Patience is something I have struggled with for a long while. When I began to listen to my self talk during my healing process I realized I needed to change the messages I was telling myself in order to learn patience. I have improved dramatically in some areas of my life but there is still a-ways to go in other areas! Researching patience and WHY it is so important makes me all the more determined to keep on working on it in all areas of my life.

WHY is Patience a Virtue?

When you are being patient you are in the "now" and KNOW that being impatient will get you nowhere. When you are patient you are relaxed and are expressing the understanding that everything is fine and if you need to wait a few minutes (or years in some cases) -- there is a reason for it and it is okay. Patience is a virtue because with the world in high speed technology-wise you are CHOOSING to take a second and breathe. You are accepting the now and are appreciating the rewards you get for not being impatient. Patience is its own reward for it means you are tolerant, calm and will benefit from the situation at hand rather than get annoyed by it. Patience is a reward because by being patient you are letting go of judgment that something "needs to happen now". You are sending out signals to the world that "all is okay" and are trusting the Universe which only brings goodness to you.

Self-Talk & Patience

"To lose patience is to lose the battle"
-- Mahatma Gandhi

In my article Self Talk I talk about when you are stuck in traffic or a line how your self talk plays a key role in how you react. Being patient takes the presence on mind to stop and KNOW there is always a good place (a positive space) for your mind to go. Glaring at the checkout person will not move the line faster or make them any less stressed than they already are. Rolling your eyes at the person in back of you does nothing to help their mood. Telling yourself repeatedly you are going to be late if things don't speed up -- does not do anything to relax you or the people around you.

If you change the way you deal with things that pop up that require patience it will become a habit to use these techniques. When you are in a situation that requires short term patience whether it be the grocery store or being "held up"somehow.... try and change the way you are looking at the situation and your focus. Ask yourself how to deal best with the situation.... Have you been looking for time to think about your schedule, a gift idea or to figure something else in your life out? There is always something to think about that is more pleasant than brooding about time lost. Do the people around you look like they can use some positive talk to lighten their mood? You can use the time to connect with another person. Have you taken 2 minutes yet in your day to run through a "gratitude" list in your head? Feeling grateful for what IS right and good in your life is a sure way to shift any mood. I assure you that when you stop putting your attention on every second passing or how long things are taking -- time will move a lot faster.

If something "breaks" down or causes something to take more time -- it is up to you to use that time positively. It may be the Universe's way of telling you to SLOW Down! I would get so frustrated when my computer would freeze and now try to look at it as -- "it was time for a break anyway --I'll use the 10 minutes away to drink some water and refocus and when I reboot my computer it will run even better". Be grateful for having to stop and do a mental check in to see how you are feeling and then decide what is next.

What are the opposite traits of patience? Worry, impatience, intolerance, anger, anxiousness and sometimes even depression. While it is important to Appreciate Every Moment NOT JUST the Good Ones -- these are all emotions that are best not to dwell on for too long. If you begin to feel these emotions because of a situation that requires some patience -- there are ways to change your habits and your immediate reaction (especially in recurring situations).

Eckhart Tolle's "The Power of Now" and "A New Earth" talk repeatedly of the importance of being in the present and The Tolle/Oprah free webinar provides helpful tips on moving in this direction. Take notice of the emotions that spring up when you are these situations and think of the reaction you want to replace it with instead. Putting that intention out there and KNOWING you want to change it is the first step. This is one area I HAVE been able to dramatically improve in my life and it did not take long or much to do it. It does require being conscious in that moment but there is lots to gain from this and makes for a much calmer living space.

"Patience can't be acquired overnight. It is just like building up a muscle. Every day you need to work on it."
-- Eknath Easwaran

Everything is as it Should Be

"Patience is the key to contentment"
-- Mohammed

Inventors truly understand the value of patience.... I look forward to sharing my whole journey with my readers but let me just say "it ain't easy". I have had lots of "waiting time" between research, development, re-development, legalese, etc. and all I can say is "thank goodness I have". Sometimes things take a seemingly long time for a reason. It is possible if you react quickly without knowing everything about a situation -- there could be disastrous results. I am so grateful my invention has gone in a VERY different direction then where it started. After 5 years of revisions and many lessons learned, I can honestly say that I am very happy with my team and the new avenues my project has taken!

If you want some ideas for strengthening your patience, you might read my post "5 Steps for Letting Go and Moving Forward". In the article, I highlight ways to be patient, trust and not live in the future but in the now. Maybe you have not "found THE ONE" yet because you need to get yourself in the right space first. Maybe you didn't hear if you got the job you wanted because there is an even better opportunity coming. The more we resist and put pressure on ourselves the more unhappy we will be. The more we learn to relax, trust and have patience the better it is for us and everyone around us.

Patience with Children

Children mirror what they experience. Anyone who is around children frequently knows there are times when patience is something you PRAY for! Yes, I have sat through 4 hour car rides with "are we there yet?" every 30 seconds. (The friend with us who was not used to kids did wind up with an emergency call to her psychiatrist after that -- but that's a whole OTHER story).... I have looked both kids in the eyes when something broke and had them repeatedly say "I didn't do it". I have repeated "Take your vitamin" 20 times and still had it sit there all day (hence the chore charts idea by Ray -- my husband -- GREAT ONE HON!). I have listened to Kidz Bop (Top 40 songs sung badly by kids) over and over and over again.... I can ask for no better lessons in patience than the ones my children offer me. ;-) Remember that with children the way you treat them is how they are learning to treat others. The more patience you show them -- the more they will pass onto others.

Patience with Self

Notice I saved my weakest link for last? ;-) Patience with self includes self love, self esteem and just cutting yourself some slack. I have said as a recovering perfectionist I am facing my toughest challenge yet. I continue to challenge myself and set new goals which is wonderful for my self esteem. I have faced some long time fears and overcome them which helps my self confidence. However I am still my toughest critic and know someday I will grant myself the kindness and support that I try and grant everyone else!

Patience with Self means accepting you will "make mistakes". You just have to trust that you will learn from each experience. Patience with yourself means loving and trusting in yourself unconditionally especially in the most "trying" times. Patience with self is love and tolerance of yourself and all others.

"Infinite patience brings immediate results"
-- Wayne Dyer

"Patience is the key to Paradise"
-- A Turkish Proverb

"If you are patient in one moment of anger,
you will escape a hundred days of sorrow
-- A Chinese Proverb

Patience is indeed a virtue. One that is well worth the work to achieve. Whether it be for those daily events that come up, for your long term goals in life, influencing children in your life or most importantly for yourself -- patience is a virtue that you can carry through every part of your life. It is not difficult and with a little awareness and shifting attention you can make yourself and everyone around you a lot more relaxed. Even if you accomplish switching your mood to patience one time out of the next 10 I can guarantee you have saved yourself a lot of undue stress and will feel wonderful for it. You might even consider making it a habit! ;-)

In what ways do you show patience? What are some of the skills you use to demonstrate patience?


Tim Brownson said...

Spooky coincidence time. I was just writing a post for my blog when M/S word for Mac popped up that there was a critical update I need to install. Critical! Wow, I'd better shut it down as I'm told then in case my house explodes or my head falls off.

Much gnashing of teeth ensued, but I thought I could catch up on some reading. That's when I came here to read about patience.

I think on a spooky scale that get's at least 6 out of 10.

What a different world we'd live in if everybody were patient. Starting with me!

Jenny Mannion said...

Hi Tim, Yes 6 or 7 on spookiness from me! ;-) You always make me laugh and your comment came at a good moment as well. Just came back from taking my 2 children to the dentist and found out they'll both need braces -- OUCH -- that's my wallet talking not their mouths which actually might say the same! Glad we could help each other out today! Always wonderful to get a comment from you. ;-) Jenny

livelife365 said...

One of my greatest personal challenges is working on bettering my patience. Excellent post! Wonderful site!


Jenny Mannion said...

Hi Mike, Thank you so much for your very kind words. I think patience is an issue for the majority of us in some form or another.... it's a biggie! Once you start being conscious of wanting to improve it and taking small steps it gets easier and you find yourself applying it to other parts of your life. Thanks for commenting! Gratefully, Jenny

Bruno LoGreco said...

My grade four teach had this taped at the top of the chalk board: Patience is a virtue and around here it is a must.

I will never forget Patience is a Virtue.

Thank you!

Jenny Mannion said...

Hi Bruno, Isn't it amazing how long something a good teacher has taught can last? Teachers have amazing patience as I witness whenever I have helped on my son's trips, class events, etc... Thanks so much for commenting! Gratefully, Jenny

Bruno LoGreco said...

:) have a great day and sorry for the spelling error.

Anonymous said...

I very much enjoyed reading your article on patience, thanks.

Jenny Mannion said...

Bruno, Well -- I don't even see a spelling error and wouldn't be upset about it anyway -- yur human -- oops? ;-)! Thanks so much for your continued support -- I really appreciate it! You are doing wonderful things! Jenny

You are very welcome and thank you so much for coming by and leaving such a nice comment! I welcome comments from my readers and you are always welcome to share here! Jenny

Bruno LoGreco said...

You are very welcome. It's always nice to blog with other like minded individuals that also share a similar passion.

Best wishes Jenny!

Liara Covert said...

Your reflections prompt positive thoughts and initiatives. Patience is certainly a virtue.

Jenny Mannion said...

Hi Bruno,
I continued blogging to get my message out there because it combined passions - writing as well as the mind/body connection. The wonderful people I have met along the way have been a HUGE bonus and blessing. It is always a pleasure to read your insightful articles. Cheers Bruno!
Gratefully, Jenny

Hi Liara,
Synchronicity has been at work a LOT lately in my life... I have been thinking of you recently, have read some of your posts and have been meaning to get back in touch. Thank you so much for your kind comments on my writing. There are so many people now that write on important topics. It is my pleasure to write about things that play major roles in my life. Writing about topics helps me learn even more and look at things as I may not have. It is a gift to be able to share that with others and have people resonate with my words! Thanks again Liara! Love, Jenny

Lisa Newton said...

Self-forgiveness is a biggie for me. I'm also a recovering perfectionist, and it's a long struggle, but I know it's worth it.

Thanks for the great words...............:)

Jenny Mannion said...

Hi Lisa, Yes, Recovering from perfectionism is not always easy but it is well worth it. I am so grateful to be "aware" of it (most of the time) so I can stop myself when I notice it and see myself in a tizzy (what IS a tizzy anyway?). :=) After all I can't be a perfectionist about recovering from perfectionism! ;-) Thanks so much for taking the time to comment and for visiting. Gratefully, Jenny

Sandra said...

Great post! I once had a conversation with my favorite Aunt who was one of the most patient and gentle people that I knew. I told her that I wanted the gift of patience and I wanted it now. Well, she smiled her smile of wisdom and told me that if I prayed for patience, I would be tested on it. She said rather than trying to learn patience, look at each situation that is “trying my patience" and learn to breathe. At the time, I thought ugh she didn’t get it, if she would just teach me patience I would be well on my way. Well, yes, she knew better than I did, and today I can’t say that I have mastered patience but I am still working on it and by the way... I breathe a lot :-)

Jenny Mannion said...

Hi Sandra, Yes, breathing is key! There have been times when I get frustrated and find that I am holding my breath... refocusing the energy on long breaths does help to calm down. Your aunt gave you great advice! Thanks for visiting and for commenting! Gratefully, Jenny

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