I seem to recall hearing that when I was younger and rolling my eyes dramatically.
But today, in a world where everything happens at the touch of a button, maybe we could all do with strengthening our patience.
Gone are the days when you would wait 14 days for delivery, Amazon even has same day delivery on some items. Technology – and don’t get me wrong, I LOVE technology – has evolved so that all our gadgets are small and fast. We click a link and if it doesn’t open immediately we click it again, and again and then several times to demonstrate our annoyance that our computer isn’t fast enough today. Actually all we’re doing is giving the computer several duplicated commands to process, making it even slower and if we’d just exercised a little patience we’d be browsing the desired page already.
Most of us are pretty decent people, but we’re all guilty of being a little self centred. I mean I’m rather fond of saying I hate people. People ruin everything. But I’m a person, my family are people, my boyfriend, my business partner and my best friends are people and they’re all pretty awesome.
But sometimes, like when you’re driving to work and you’re late and you’re trying to get through that amber light before it turns red but the driver in front of you is slowing down you’ll no doubt fume and call them names. All they’re doing is being a good, safe, responsible driver and if you weren’t running late for work, you’d no doubt have done the same.
Sometimes we take risks and then get angry when the strangers around us don’t do their part to minimise the risk. Like stopping in a box junction and then causing an obstruction coz the queue of cars before us didn’t move before the lights changed. That’s on us, and shouting at people and getting angry with them is really unfair.
And don’t you find it just a bit exhausting? All that anger and aggression. Maybe we should all stop for a second to notice what’s happening around us, to see what others are doing, to take some time to just be in the moment while we’re waiting for something beyond our control to catch up.
Drink some coffee, eat a biscuit, read a book – one of those paper ones – Maybe start your journey earlier to account for those annoying slow drivers. And when you feel yourself getting angry and impatient, just stop and ask yourself why.
We can’t control everything. And trying to isn’t going to make us any happier. Is your life improved because you angrily overtook a learner driver and beat them to the red light? No it’s ridiculous and all the other road users thought you were a dick*.
We’ve all been that person. And we’ve all seen that person and raised an eyebrow and though “jeez, calm down.”
So let’s all just calm down. Next time you get impatient, or want to shout abuse at someone for unknowingly not behaving the way you wanted them to behave, just stop. Stop, and ask yourself, ‘does it really matter?’
And then enjoy those couple of moments of calm.
*OK I’ll admit it. This post was inspired by yet another impatient driver incident on my way to work.