I am what I think I am, what I say I am, and what I do, so……, I'm telling you right now, I am PATIENT.
Have you ever had a nemesis in your life? Something or someone who takes every ounce of your strength in order to deal with it or them. Maybe it's a person in your life or people you don't even know. Maybe you are in a situation that's not going your way and dealing with life takes all the patience you could muster. Or…..have you ever been so excited about something, you jumped in head first only to find out you are way behind the power curve?
If you said 'Yes' to any of the situations above, there is an answer; but it's all up to you. Patience is something you can have, but it usually has to be learned. Recognizing that sudden rise of blood pressure in stressful moments is one of the most important things you need to know. Stopping the chemical reaction that can turn you green and into the amazing Hulk is a key to preventing a potential full-blown explosion. On the other hand, if that over excitement when you see a 'opportunity of a lifetime' is getting you in trouble, stop and use what you're getting ready to read below. If you don't stop this impulsiveness dead in its tracks, your world can temporarily be turned upside down and/or you may do something you will regret.
The following four techniques are amazingly simple ways to help you get the life changing virtue of patience.
Some may think I have a Type A personality. A little high strung and never at rest. Whenever my family has to be somewhere by a certain time or if I have to deal with something important, I'm like a locomotive barreling down the tracks at 100 mph. If something gets in my way, 'toot toot', I'm coming through. So for me, this is where super human strength has to come in. I have to reach down and pull every bit of gumption out of my bag of tricks and just s..l..o..w d..o..w..n. Once I recognize this, I pause, take a deep breath and then force myself to work my way back down into 'slow mode.' Slow and methodical like Timmy the Tortoise.
Getting in my car, driving and getting ready to go into traffic is another perfect example. Once I know I'm going to be in traffic, I mentally downshift a few gears lower. I then imagine I will be just taking a leisurely drive down the road instead of high tense, weaving in and out of lanes, trying to get somewhere faster than everybody else. This is also exactly what I do when my temper rises and I'm getting ready to go into explode mode. I mentally slow myself down, try to remain calm and envision being on a stroll through a windswept field of daffodils!
Did you know that we supposedly have anywhere from 50K-70K thoughts a day? Even if its half of that, that is a crazy amount of times a day we are talking to ourselves. Way more than talking to anyone else in fact. That's powerful and what's awesome is that talking to yourself is FREE and nobody else can tell you what to say! It's an unbelievably great way to gain control of your mind and remain patient. Leverage this to the maximum extent possible, because for me, it's the simplest way to calm down! If you buy into the whole concept of think-talk-do, then you totally agree we can talk ourselves into being patient. The key here though is to think, then take action. Do what you say you're going to do. Be patient!
CONTROL YOUR EMOTIONS
Self-talk and controlling our emotions go hand in hand. Putting a lid on our emotions is a hard thing to do for most, but it's an absolute must if you want to have patience. Putting those thousands of thoughts in your head to use in a positive way is a great technique to do this.
Are you a logical person or more emotional? I'm an emotional person and when I feel strongly about something, I go all in. The dangerous part is when emotions heat up and we react to things. Self-talk and controlling blood flow becomes critical at this point. We can't let our emotions make our decisions for us. We have to overcome that and put the miraculous brain we have to use. When you think about it, impatience causes FOMO, the fear of missing out. Fearing you missed an opportunity and then chasing it usually is a recipe for disaster. Impatience gains control and dumb things happen. Ever heard 'Good things come to those who wait?' It's all coming together isn't it?
When all else fails and you feel your patience slipping, it's just better sometimes to walk away. Taking a breather and readdressing the situation at a later time is an awesome way to do this. I don't know what it is about when emotions rise, but patience usually goes out the window. Stepping away gives us opportunity. Opportunity to calm down and logically think through the situation. It gives us time to assess and analyze before that chemical imbalance gets in the way of common sense and what is right. Having time keeps us from 'cutting our nose off despite our face!' Sometimes, that can be very costly, both emotionally and monetarily. Have you ever missed an investment opportunity only to 'get in' when everybody else is 'getting out'? Have you ever received an email that raised the hair on the back of your neck or made your face turn red? Our first inclination is to fire back with a nuclear salvo of intercontinental ballistic missiles! DON'T DO IT. Get up and go do somethings else besides stir in your seat and tell yourself 'I'm not going to let them get away with that!' Patience my child. Patience.
As I've grown older, I've come to realize why patience IS a virtue. There is nothing but positive about being patient. A better family life. Well thought out decisions instead of knee jerk reactions. Better health instead of stress-induced illness. Being emotionally stable instead of being on a roller coaster ride to no-where. Having infinite opportunities instead of being limited because of FOMO. The list goes on…..
When we think about it, patience is all up to us. We are in control of us and either we do what it takes to have patience or potentially live a life of stress and mediocrity. Having patience is such a powerful tool to have in life and what's crazy is it is free for the taking. Either we do what we have to do to have it, or we don't.
Waiting is a natural phenomenon of nature. Controlling our state of mind while waiting is a key to a having a balanced and fruitful life!
Adopt the pace of nature: her secret is patience…..Ralph Waldo Emerson