Patience, patience, patience – a word that has been consistently coming up in my life. A reminder of sorts to slow down and to be present, rather than speeding through life at 100mph.
You see, it’s so easy to speed through life, going through the motions, without fully experiencing the moment. In fact, it’s a common practice to do this. We truly live in a fast-paced society, where patience is not a prevalent practice.
Think about it, how many times do you catch yourself driving at a fast pace to get somewhere when you aren’t even running late, or you have nowhere to be? Further, how many times do you find yourself frustrated because the car in front of you is driving slower than you would like it to?
Today, especially with the rise of the internet and social media, we are used to instant validation, and immediate results, placing patience on the back burner.
For example, you have a question, you head over to Google on your phone, and typically your answer is right there. However, sometimes the answer to your question isn’t immediately apparent, and when this happens, you can feel frustrated and overwhelmed.
Another example is when you send a message to a friend, and you expect a prompt response back from them. However, when that friend does not respond to you right away, you get frustrated. Does this sound familiar?
If I had to list all of the areas of my life where I have been previously impatient, we would be here all day… and perhaps night.
Patience is one of the most valuable tools that we have at our disposal. But patience is a skill that we need to cultivate. And it can be so easy to lose sight of this practice.
Before we talk about ways to cultivate patience, I want to address five benefits of cultivating patience.
Five Benefits of Cultivating Patience
(1) Patience enables us to be more present in the moment
Using the example of the slow driver in front of you, if you choose to be frustrated with the driver, you will most likely be fixated on the vehicle, thus blocking out anything that is occurring around you. As a result, you will miss out on the beauty that is surrounding you on your drive.
However, if you choose to practice patience and to make the intention to enjoy your drive, you will be able to notice the beauty that surrounds you. Even more, you become more open to receive any signs and messages being sent your way from the universe.
By practicing patience, we become more able to experience all that life has to offer us. Further, we are more able to recognize the opportunities that come our way, which we may have missed out on if our focus was elsewhere.
(2) Patience allows us to lead a healthier and happier lifestyle
With impatience comes frustration, stress, anxiety, and anger; and when our body is not in a relaxed state, our health becomes compromised. Stress can cause energetic imbalances and blockages in the body, which can then manifest in the physical body as illness.
There is nothing beneficial about being impatient, yet it can be an automatic response for many when it comes to situations out of our control.
When we practice patience, we become more relaxed, which leads to us being healthier, happier, and more apt to notice the blessings present in our lives.
(3) Patience helps you achieve success
When we have an idea and bring it into the physical, we are planting seeds. For those seeds to become our dreams realized, we must water them and allow them time and space to grow on the universe’s divine timing.
It is important to tend to these seeds, so your dreams become a reality. If you choose to move on because it’s taking too long, then you miss out on what could have been a significant success for you. It’s important to follow through with your ideas.
(4) Patience assists us in opening our hearts to self-love and self-acceptance
I’m willing to bet that there have been times when you haven’t met your own expectations of yourself. Those times when you have been too hard on yourself because you didn’t pass that job testing or you keep getting sick and are unable to be as productive as you wanted yourself to be. Does this sound familiar? It does to me.
By practicing patience with ourselves, we learn to love and accept ourselves even more. It’s so important to allow yourself the space to take a step back in those times when you realize you are too hard on yourself.
You are just as deserving of love as anyone else. And self-love is the most potent form when it comes to your wellbeing.
(5) Patience leads to kindness and compassion towards others
When we take the time to practice patience with others, whether it is in a time of frustration or adversity, we are consciously choosing how we react to the situation.
Rather than being short if a person cuts you off in a line, for example, you can choose to take a deep breath and to extend that person kindness and compassion because they may very well be in need of it at that moment. You could say to yourself, “that person must really need to get somewhere faster than me at this time.” And then allow yourself to let it go.
Kindness goes a long way, and can significantly influence a person’s day. After all, it only takes a moment to look at another human being and send a smile their way.
When we choose to be patient with others, we are choosing to extend kindness and compassion to them.
“Patience is not simply the ability to wait – it’s how we behave while we’re waiting.” – Joyce Meyer
Six Ways to Cultivate Patience
As mentioned above, patience is a skill that we need to cultivate. To do this, let’s talk about six ways to cultivate patience into your life:
(1) Let go of the gas and slow down
When you catch yourself speeding through life, take action and slow down. Drive the speed limit and watch how others rush past you. Be spontaneous and take the long drive home to enjoy the journey. Stop and smell the roses (literally).
(2) Practice Active Listening
Really listen to the person in front of you, rather than already having pre-formulated responses in your mind. When we are patient and take the time to listen to others, we not only allow give ourselves the opportunity to learn from them, but we also allow the person to be heard. After all, every person we meet can greatly affect our lives if we take the time to listen to them.
To practice active listening and presence, I recommend using the Synctuition app. Synctuition uses 3D sound by combining over 13,000 sounds recorded from around the world into unique mind journeys. Each track is an immersive mind travel experience, and they are so relaxing. I love listening to the app at nighttime just before I head to sleep; it helps me let go of any mind chatter and get a good night’s sleep. Learn all about the app and three ways I use it inside this post.
(3) Take a Deep Breath
If you catch yourself facing adversity, allow yourself the space to take a step back and to take a deep breath. Consciously choose how you react to the situation at hand by shifting your perception; try to look at the bigger picture. It’s only a bump in time, not a forever. Also, look for the humour in the situation. As Sonia Choquette says in her book Trust Your Vibes, “the situation is critical, but not serious.”
(4) Be Aware of Your Surroundings
There may be a person in need of assistance nearby. You can practice patience by taking the time to stop and hold a door open for another person; to help a person carry their groceries to their car, or even to send a smile their way to remind them that they are not alone. Being of assistance to others is a great way to practice patience.
(5) Practice Gratitude
Take the time each day to practice gratitude. By making a list of 5 things you are grateful for from your day, you will start to see the gifts and synchronicities that come your way. By practicing gratitude you begin to see that everything is interconnected, and when faced with adversity you start to look at it as a learning opportunity rather than a “problem.”
We have a monthly 7-day gratitude challenge inside of the Conscious Living Circle online community. It’s free to join, and it’s off social media. We’d love to see you there!
(6) Let go of control and trust the path
Things will not always go the way you planned. Be open to twists and turns along the path because they will happen. Trust that you are exactly where you need to be. Practice patience by going with the flow and seeing where the path leads you.
And there you have my favourite ways to cultivate patience. All is unfolding as it should be. Remember to enjoy the journey, sweet friend! The journey is where it’s at, not the destination.
Featured Photo Credit: Sara Monk
What lessons has patience brought you in your life? Let us know in the conversation below!
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