In the age we live, where there is instant-gratification for most things, the effect of having to wait for anything can cause us to become impatient. Waiting a few seconds for a website to load, can cause us to get upset. Being behind a slow driver, sends us into a rage.
“Patience is a key element of success.”Bill Gates
Examples of things that could cause our impatience:
- Waiting for a clerk at the supermarket who is having difficulty with the register
- Waiting on hold with the doctor’s office
- Explaining things to the elderly
- Waiting for an elevator
- Teaching a young child
It sometimes seems as if there is an unending list of things trying our patience. Truth is, our patience is tested daily and we need to control it if we are to be healthy individuals.
Our impatience can lead to frustration, which raises our stress level, which then may affect our health. We might feel angry due to our impatience which may lead to hypertension or ulcers.
“Patience is not the ability to wait, but the ability to keep a good attitude while waiting.”Anonymous
There are also studies that show impatience is linked to being overweight. “The researchers found that impatient individuals are more likely to be obese than people who are good at waiting,” reports The Washington Post. This may be linked to the accessibility of fast food and not wanting to wait to get home and make more healthy eating decisions.
It is obvious that the lack of patience is not a positive thing in our lives. No one desires to feel the emotions of frustration, stress, and anger that comes from being impatient. We should all prioritize losing our impatience.
The question then is… “How can I learn to be more patient?”
- Practice, practice, practice – take a bus to work
- Determine why you are feeling impatient – are you hungry or late?
- Distract yourself – play a game on your phone while you wait
- Know your triggers so you can manage them – don’t get in the car during rush hour
- Practice calming techniques – deep breathing
- Accept the things you cannot change
- Get enough sleep
- Take vacations to relax
- Train yourself by doing a jigsaw puzzle or paint-by-number
- Be patient with yourself through the process
“To lose patience is to lose the battle.”Mahatma Gandhi
The fact that you become mindful with your impatience is a great first step to overcoming it. It will not be easy and you will not change overnight. As you practice these techniques, you will realize that you are becoming less angry and stressed by the very thing that used to send you into a rage. You can control your emotions!