Impatience Can Be a Virtue

Photo Credit: Movie Fone

Photo Credit: Movie Fone

In many aspects of life, I strive to be a patient person:

The wait in a long line, for instance, goes by pretty quick if you’ve got friends, music, or maybe even just something you’ve needed to mull over on your own.

Family might be crazy and demanding, but in the end you know that they’re only like that because they care the most about you. (Especially at the times when it’s really hard to remember that.)

Starting a new hobby/job/endeavor can be frustrating and painful at first, but cheating your way to the top only hurts you—having the patience to continually work at and practice is the only way to truly master that skill. Skipping the time means skipping the benefits.

As they say, patience is a virtue!

But patience can also be a temptation.

I’ve spent a lot of my life so far practicing patience, compromise, and versatility. When bad stuff comes, I try my best to go with the flow and all that. But I’ve realized that this habit, while mostly useful, does have its downsides. I’ve found that, while waiting out problems is one thing, all of this patience can easily turn into waiting out opportunities.

For example, let’s say I want to try applying to a new program. Beyond the actual physical effort of submitting the application, there’s a very convoluted mental process at work:

First off, I have to make sure I did all of my research—no matter how much I’ve read or seen before, do I actually understand what this program is like?

Then, as I apply, it’s the constant organizing and reorganizing! Do I have all of my papers/contacts/requirements? I know it checked out when I first started, but does it check out NOW?

And then, before I even contemplate submitting, there’s all of the doubt: Can I imagine myself even doing well in this? Will I even enjoy this??

It’s all excuses! And because I’m so accustomed to being patient, I’m used to humoring every single one.

And really, this entire process can rear its ugly head for anything, big and small. I’ve hemmed and hawed over everything from Day One game purchases to what I want to order for dinner. I could have the money in hand, or a killer portfolio, and I would still stand there, thinking: Is this right for me?

So yes, be patient with your friends, family, and life in general. Things happen. People react. It’s the nature of the beast.

But, sometimes, try practicing being impatient with yourself. Resist the temptation to make yourself comfortable with stasis, quietly and expertly waiting for that next great opportunity/step/decision (whenever it comes). And when that next great thing does come up, don’t let yourself wait it out. Be ready, sure, but don’t try to wait until you’re “fully prepared.”

Not every event, significant or not, is a siege. The steps you’re taking might be huge—or they might be nothing at all.

About Jessica Morales

Jessica is the Marketing Director & Publisher of NWYT. With a Bachelor of Science in Anthropology and a minor in Music History, she is an avid reader, less frequent writer, and altogether just loves to hear a good story. To that extent, her field of study may have been slightly influenced by a certain movie archaeologist. Read more about her here. See All of Jessica’s Posts

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