The Art of Patience

Lack of patience, a trait that conservatives would see as the grand weakness of this generation isn’t just missing amongst couples. It is the missing link between friends; families, parents and offspring.

Employers and employees lack it too and it reduces productivity. Lack of patience shows up everywhere: at the ticket-stand at the cinema.

It is that tiny thing that triggers pacing around or outright confrontation of the sales’ representative who could be doing her first day on the job, or the hired taxi driver who may still be learning to navigate his way around town.

Patience could be useful. Patience gives people ample time to put things right. It gives slow people a sense of belonging, that though the world may be quite fast, they too belong here and they deserve to be taken along too. Patience heals.

I lack patience like many of my peers. When I am set to do a thing, I prepare my mind and calculate what time it would take me to have it finished. When I am delayed without due apology or foreknowledge of what might be responsible for such delay, I boil up. I panic when my girlfriend does not take my calls and does not return it within 24 hours. I imagine a lot in my head and distort the glorious flow of love and goodness. I have had impatience eat me so much that even when church lingers a bit further than expected, I either leave, to go home to do nothing or just boil inside of me. I have been able to manage this though, but I have also gotten into trouble, courtesy of this weakness.

I am sometimes in a hurry because I think that the world is leaving me behind. I feel that there is a moment for everything and though we don’t know this special moment of our triumph, I feel I would miss it if I am slowed or anything comes in between me and whatever it is that I am after.

Patience wins us friendship. Patience is one of the attributes of humanity. I recall when I was younger; I had my dad hold my tiny fingers to a 2B pencil, for me to write. There were several occasions where I wrote the wrong letters of the alphabet even when I could see them right in front of my eyes.

The man did not give up on me. He would insist that I followed the pattern or create a replica using my own formula. I have grown to love letters and words because the one who had the opportunity to first introduce me to it did not give up on my mistakes and wrongness. He stayed with me and followed my pace until I got it right.

There were times he got irritated by my ability to forget what I had learned the previous day. He could have concluded that I had a blocked head and could amount to nothing. If parents are patient with their children, they may turn out better. If spouses are more understanding and patient with their partners, things may work out well. And even if the union fails, friendship may still linger. I think that we could learn a lot from being patient with friends even on social media. Instead of picking up a misspelled word and showing it to the world for more LIKES and looking forward to being named a badass troll, a text to the human to correct his or her error may not only give him confidence and more reasons to take humanity seriously but would take away the possibility of a revenge from him or even lead him on to being more tolerant with others. Social media should make humanity better. And the practice of patience can lead this path.


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