“Patience is power”
It truly is that. There are so many reasons to practice patience. I believe I’ve always been a fairly patient person and building this into my practice has meant that being a parent is that little bit easier (It’s still hard!). So why is patience such an important part of mindfulness? In my humble opinion, I feel that we spend our lives impatient for the weekend, the next payday, even lunchtime and in doing so we miss the glorious moments that we are in right now.
The reason we consider patience to be an important attitude to cultivate in mindfulness is that it benefits you in a number of important ways. All of which enrich and nourish your life.
- Allowing things to unfold in their own time – this ends up having its own beautiful and nourishing quality to it.
- Helps you to see the beauty that is in each moment, even the painful ones.
- Gives you time between an emotion and a reaction, allowing you to make better decisions.
- Allows you to be kinder to those around you.
- Lessens the anxiety which is inevitable with impatience.
Those are just a few good reasons to practice patience. But how do we practice patience? In mindfulness, we practice it in meditation and it begins to spill out into our daily lives. One simple way to do it is to slowly extend your meditation time each day. There will also be times during your practice when you are getting annoyed with yourself, this is a good time to practice being patient with yourself.
I won’t be annoying and say “Take a deep breath” that’s not necessary, actually it’s more like just becoming aware of your breath is far more effective at that moment of annoyance. In fact, that works for any situation where someone says “just breathe” and you get the urge to punch them in the face but instead you say “I am!”. What they really mean to say is “become really aware of your breathing” notice where you feel it the most. Pay close attention to it. That above all else will give you the patience you need.
Anyone can wait. Being patient is about not losing your sh*t while you are waiting. Learning this attitude is one of the most important gifts you can give yourself. Impatience causes pain and agitation, who wants to keep hold of that? Next time you feel yourself becoming impatient, remind yourself that it’s just agitation and that you can calm it down by simply paying attention to your breath.