Waiting. It can feel like the worst thing in the world. I am so guilty of getting caught up in doing things quickly that when something slows me down it will ruin my mood. Recently I’ve been doing some more mindful things to start practicing patience.
While I am far from people calling me a “patient person,” I have noticed my own reaction to things are starting to change. I’m going to keep rolling with it and share what I’ve found to be helpful.
It might seem childish but when you’re trying something new, it’s always best to start with the basics. Pick a number when you’re frustrated in traffic or waiting on a response from someone and then count to it. Maybe more than once.
Why does this work? Not only is counting making you actively think about something else but it will start to help you realize how much time has actually passed. Sometimes 10 seconds waiting for someone to cross the street feels like a year and you get impatient. Count it out. It was only 10 seconds and probably didn’t make a difference to your arrival.
These little toys are great for helping time pass. We brought these on the plane for my little one and I ended up using them a lot myself. I now keep one in my purse.
I am the queen of getting ancy when waiting around on something and these gives me a way to exert some energy and focus rather than tapping my foot thinking of all the thing I could be doing with that time instead.
3. Walking places
Why walk? Because it’s a pace that allows you to find yourself present in the moment. When you move with haste, you miss out on things.
Start making an effort to walk more places. If not to set destinations like a friend’s house or the store then some meandering around the neighborhoods nearby or a hike. Taking the time purposely to get there more slowly. You’ll start to find it easier to cope when something isn’t moving along as quickly as you like.
4. Choose a new hobby to learn
Nothing helps you learn something quite like experience! Learning something new takes time. Pick something and follow through with it to the end. Teach yourself some discipline. It goes hand and hand with patience.
5. Actively work on your tolerance for discomfort and boredom
Have you ever tried just being uncomfortable for a little bit and not freaking out? Easier said than done but being bored and just accepting that that’s the reality right now will higher your tolerance for things in general.
Boredom breeds discovery and creativity.
6. Find things in the present moment to focus on
Such a hippie dippy policy but dang it, it works. When I’m getting ancy, I look around the room and start taking stock of things. Noticing sounds or something I could do in general always pops up.
It doesn’t just happen. You have to make a conscious effort to divert from your compulsion to be bored and find something to enjoy in the present.
What? Plants? But yes, plants. Starting a garden takes times and sometimes more than one try. Especially in Arizona! But with patience and diligent work and research you will have a great and often delicious reward! Ones that will keep coming back when maintained but it’s all about timing and patience!
Nothing is overnight but even continuing to find ways to be patient is practicing patience. Patience doesn’t equal compliance but it does incorporate a nurturing attitude with how you respond to things. Who doesn’t want that?