Quick solutions are not always the best. Many of us have realized that. However, we still rush through life as if there was no tomorrow.
At school we were already trained to be fast. Top results in the shortest possible time were expected. I remember very well, the whole class sweating during a test because the amount of work had to be done in an extremely limited time.
Pace seems to have become a mistaken quality feature in our time. We want to handle too many things at the same time, and therefore our diaries are full up. Believe me, I know what I am talking about…
But where does this madness take us? How can we stop it? Or: can we actually make an end to it?
HOW YOU CAN RESCUE YOURSELF FROM THE IMPATIENCE-TRAP?
Before your impatience tears you to pieces, you should admit that it is mostly very difficult to change yourself, or things in your life. A good thing takes time – and changes take time. Therefore, it does not make sense to put yourself under pressure to lose weight, to improve your tennis, or to learn a foreign language. It seems more sensible to take time to make positive progress. And don’t forget to celebrate intermediate success!
DO NOT TAKE ON TOO MUCH AT A TIME
Women especially are used to a daily routine full of duties: children, family, partnership, job, household, friends and free time are squeezed into a 24-hour-day. Then we wonder why we cannot feel ourselves any more. And if there is a queue at the cash desk, or we get stuck in a traffic jam, our nerves are exposed. We would only have to check our time management every now and then, and let go of some of our appointments, then we would suffer less from the energy thief impatience.
LEAVING COMPETITIVE THINKING
Let’s be honest! Our friend manages more at the same time, our neighbour creates a magical 5-course-menu in no time, our sister runs 15 kilometres at a fabulous speed. And we would like to keep up! We want to prove to ourselves and others how good and how fast we are. Maybe we should ask ourselves whether we really need this competition. Or has the impatience with ourselves got something to do with our self esteem? Only if we honestly recognize it, and work on it, can we free ourselves from this trap.
ACCEPTING STAGNATION AND DEAD-END-ROADS
Do you always assume that life has to keep moving? Do you freak out when changes or other situations drag on unexpectedly? Welcome to the club! However, we should be aware that also a river cannot flow at the same pace all the time: sometimes it has to fight against rocks in the water, then it is so flat and shallow that it almost comes to a standstill. If we accept the fact that our stream of life and success sometimes slows down, or that we are allowed to end up in dead ends, because they bear learning tasks for us, then we won’t lose nerves in stagnating situations.
ALLOWING OTHERS THE TIME THEY NEED
I could sometimes jump up and down if others can’t keep my pace. (And I am not talking about jogging which I am not so keen on.) No, I mean quick decisions, quick reactions, change of direction, or fast perception. But, am I really entitled to judge others by their pace? Wouldn’t it be fairer to accept everyone’s own pace? Apart from this, who says that my pace is the right one? As soon as we accept that others live their lives at their pace, as soon as we work on our flexibility and tolerance, we can make the experience that our counter-productive impatience turns into patience.
The more you become aware of the daily impatience-traps, the better you can avoid blundering to them. It acts like every other habit we want to get rid of:
- First we have to recognize it
- Then we have to develop the desire to change it
- And finally we have to work in small or bigger steps to put our knowledge into practice.
Of course, this does not only apply to you, but also to me and many other women. If patience is not one of your strengths… you know that you are not alone. And, therefore, it is on you and us all, how we handle the topic in the future.