10 steps for women who eventually want to fulfil their potential
‘Grass will not grow quicker if you pull on it.’ Unknown
Time flies by – and so do we. Maybe you sometimes feel you are missing out on something when you cannot keep up with the high speed. You may overestimate your chances of coming to a quicker conclusion, or you want to take a shortcut. In the end, you find this was all counter-productive. It might help you to realize that every change takes its own time. Just as grapes only turn into fine wine after a long period of fermentation and maturation. Therefore, my little invitation to self-reflection:
- Do you always want to have things done immediately?
- Are you annoyed if other people cannot keep up with your speed?
- Do you assume something does not work because you cannot see any immediate results?
- Do you think everything in life should happen quickly?
- Does the sentence ‘A good thing takes time’ not at all correspond with your philosophy of life?
- Are you proud of your multi-tasking abilities?
- Do you sometimes underestimate how much time it takes to achieve a certain result?
Why we are often so impatient
In our fast-moving times we are used to the fact that everything is ‘immediately’ possible. In former times letters took days or weeks to reach the receiver, now emails or text messages arrive at the recipient within seconds. Whereas actors and actresses had to undergo thorough training before they could apply for a role, they now become famous overnight in casting shows. These observations lead to false conclusions and create the impression that also success may come without effort. But, generally, reality looks different, and therefore, you should
- remain realistic concerning your aims and results,
- plan for the long-term, instead of wanting to see successful results in a short time,
- consciously allow the time which is necessary for change,
- not try to gain anything under pressure,
- not make your life quality dependent on results you wish for,
- accept that improvement takes time, or will not be achieved at all.
How you can shed your impatience
It is an important step to learn to distinguish between realistic and unrealistic expectations. Needless to say, this needs honest self-reflection or external help. As long as you chase excessive expectations, which can never be realized or fulfilled, you are wasting your energy.
The present school system still involves judgement according to achievement. However, try not to measure your progress and results with other people’s achievements. You are an individual personality, with your individual strengths and weaknesses. Therefore, it does not make sense to measure yourself against others.
Appreciate your partial successes!
Are you impatient because you only have your final aim in mind? Then you should remember that it often takes little intermediate steps to reach your aim. The problem: the intermediate steps and partial successes are often not appreciated accordingly. Therefore, always remember that even the way to your aim is an important part for achieving your goal.
Shortcuts sometimes seem to be the solution when you impatiently hop from one foot to the other. But shortcuts are often connected with a loss of quality. Therefore, ponder carefully whether they only bring an advantage in time, or whether it is better to invest patience for the sake of quality.
Do not be drawn to hasty or wrong actions!
And if you belong to the impulsive people, you have surely made the experience that you acted hastily and wrongly due to impatience and frustration. Already Confucius said that he who has no patience in the small things, will fail the bigger plan.
There are probably areas in your life where it is absolutely clear that they need time and leisure for their development. But there are definitely also circumstances in life where you wish something might happen immediately. Therefore, look at these areas very consciously, and try to make the best, by learning to practise your patience.