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How to Practice Patience and Why Impatience is Ruining Your Life

How to Practice Patience and Why Impatience is Ruining Your Life

In this age of fast everything, many of us ambitious people are intensely hungry for success, money, growth, love, etc. We see somebody with a shiny toy, say, success in a certain area. And we want it too—now. This sentiment results from the illusion that we are in complete control over our lives. In reality, we are not.

The Illusion of Control

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    If we operate under the pretense that we are the ones in control, we encounter frustration, self-loathing, and general irritability. If we take 110% responsibility for life events, we see all negative circumstances as entirely our fault. That is a lie. We are in control about 89% of the time. Unexpected events happen. We cannot control the actions of others. This is not to say you should lean back and cede control. No. I believe in having direction, goals, and intentions. However, over-attachment to this mentality is detrimental to your success and your health. Patience is the acceptance of this fact and the willingness to trust outside forces to guide you in the most appropriate way. Patience is the openness to unpredictable events. Patience allows for relaxation and the enjoyment of each moment.

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    Why Impatience is Ruining Your Life

    Impatience is stressful. It ruins relationships. It devalues you as a an individual, and impedes your likelihood of success in any endeavor. Note that patience does not mean laziness. Patience is not the art of watching life go by. Patience is instead than intelligence on when to let go—when to surrender control. You can work as hard as you want, but expecting results yesterday will leave you with low self-esteem and a sour attitude. No one wants to be friends with a sourpuss. Impatience is the result of your inflated ego. Self-righteousness and a sense of entitlement lead to impatience. When you are in this space, you feel as if the world is underserving you by not presenting your desires on a silver platter.

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    How Do You Cultivate Patience?

    patience

      You cannot try to be more patient as you cannot try to lose weight. No, readers of Lifehack are smarter than that. We are high-value and high-functioning people. We do not simply “try” to accomplish things in life. We deliberately and systematically come up with a plan and method for execution. Below are concrete ways to cultivate patience:

      1. Learn how to breathe

      • When we get anxious and overly attached to outcomes, our breath immediately shortens. Oxygen that goes to our brains is reduced. We can’t think clearly.
      • When you notice yourself getting anxious and overly attached to end results, take a quick time out. Have the discipline to drop everything, sit still and breathe with ease. A few minutes should be enough.
      • Understand that even though you do largely determine your fate with your deliberate actions, goals, and productivity plans, you are not God and you cannot control every single event in life. Let it go. You’ll feel relieved.

      2. Love kindly. Give fully.

      • Love and impatience do not mix well. They are like water and oil.
      • Love is infinite in patience, eternal. There is no “end goal.”
      • Love is giving in nature. Impatience in love is selfish and narcissistic. Impatience in love is not actually love. It’s more like a self-serving desire to fulfill basic connection needs.
      • Love is understanding, forgiveness, and compassion. Love is a temporary detachment to the self and empathy with another. Impatience cannot exist in this realm.

      3. Take notes, analyze, and strategize.

      • Like any area you want to improve in your life, you must analyze where you right now. In which areas do you need more patience?
      • Write these areas down and star the most important area. If you were more patient in this area, how would that improve you life? Find your motivation.
      • Patience for its own sake isn’t very sexy. Find a motivating factor. Your health and emotional well-being might be a wise incentive.

      4. Excel at a new hobby.

      • Try something you’ve always wanted to try. Really make the effort to be good at it.
      • Now observe your learning curve. Do you see that the desire for immediate success is an impossible wish?
      • How can you apply these observations to other realms in your life?

      5. Get confident in your ability to achieve.

      • Impatience results from an uncertainty in your self-efficacy. When you are unsure of your ability to execute, you get impatient for outcomes. You want to prove to yourself that you are capable.
      • Convince yourself that the object of your desire is yours. You are completely capable of achieving whatever it is that you want.
      • The question is when you will achieve it, not if you will achieve it. And timing, you cannot control.
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      Last Updated on November 5, 2019

      12 Powerful Habits of a Lifelong Learner

      12 Powerful Habits of a Lifelong Learner

      Formal education is something everyone has to go through to a certain degree, and the knowledge it offers isn’t always that practical in real life. Life long learning is how you improve as a person, bit by bit and day by day.

      Life long learners recognize the importance and joy of growth so they never settle for what they currently know and always seek for improvement.

      Here are 12 habits of people who value lifelong learning have in common – see how many of them you recognize in yourself.

      1. They Read on a Daily Basis

      Whatever problem or dilemma you currently face, there’s definitely at least one decent book that discusses it and presents a variety of solutions.

      Reading is a great way to open up new horizons, train your brain and revolutionize your life. I can’t even count how many times books completely transformed the way I view the world, and it’s always a change for the better. Through reading, you can connect with successful people and learn from the lessons they share.

      Life long learners love to get lost in books and do it regularly. Bill Gates knows that reading matters a lot; on his personal blog, he reviews plenty of game-changing books.

      Due to technology, you can access a bookshelf of the wealthiest entrepreneur on this planet.

      2. They Attend Various Courses

      Whether it’s online or offline, there are countless courses you can participate in without spending a dime on it. These are great opportunities to connect with clever and like-minded people and learn from them.

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      Because of the advanced technology, you can now gain knowledge from online programs, starting from coding through self-improvement to programs from top universities.

      There are literally endless ways to thrive. What life long learners have in common is squeezing as much as possible out of these opportunities.

      3. They Actively Seek Opportunities to Grow

      Instead of spending your free time laying on the couch and watching TV, you prefer doing something creative and practical. You know every wasted minute is gone forever.

      That’s why you’d rather practice your language skills with a native-speaker you’ve met, engage in local meet up or attend a class that teaches something you always wanted to learn.

      Life long learners stay up-to-date with growth opportunities in their areas and participate in them frequently.

      4. They Take Care of Their Bodies

      “Physical fitness is not only one of the most important keys to a healthy body, it is the basis of dynamic and creative intellectual activity.” — John F. Kennedy

      A clever mind combined with a body in a great condition is the best asset you can have. Our bodies were designed to run, walk, jump, swim, lift and much more. Leading a sedentary lifestyle harms both your physical and mental sphere.

      Life long learners know the body is your temple. In order to make it flourish for as long as possible, they train regularly, move a lot and eat healthy.

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      5. They Have Diverse Passions

      Among Steve Jobs’ wise quotes, there’s one I like especially. It’s about connecting the dots:

      “You can’t connect the dots looking forward; you can only connect them looking backward. So you have to trust that the dots will somehow connect in your future.” — Steve Jobs

      Each dot is some event or skill in your life, and it’s only when you go through these elements that you know how to combine them into something great.

      Having a variety of passions indicates that you love to progress. By practicing different skills, you give yourself an advantage over the rest of the people. During hard times, you are more likely to to act intelligently and solve your problems with less effort.

      6. They Love Making Progress

      If behind the efforts, there is passion and a deep desire to grow, your chances of success are way higher, compared to when you are forced to learn.

      Life long learners love to experience the constant growth and improvement. The breakthrough moments help them to notice the impressive change that took place because of the learning process. Any milestone serves as a driving force for further headway.

      7. They Challenge Themselves with Specific Goals

      In order to keep growing, you clearly define your goals. Smart goal setting is one of the tools to ensure constant growth.

      Since you love challenges, a difficult goal doesn’t scare you. Quite the opposite, it keeps you motivated and engaged.

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      Research showed that precise and ambitious goals increase the performance of an individual. As we already agreed, life long learners are people who care about their performance, hence they never stop improving.

      8. They Embrace Change

      A complete change can lead to incredible results. This is especially visible on the example of successful companies.

      Oftentimes, it’s that transformation which created space for their so-called overnight success. Twitter was originally created as an internal service to serve Odeo employees. Currently, it has over 300 million monthly active users and is considered the second biggest social network.

      As a life long learner, you know a change can lead to extraordinary results so you welcome it and stay open minded about making a shift.

      9. They Believe It’s Never Too Late to Start Something

      Some people tend to think after a certain age, they are no longer allowed to start something and become successful. The truth is, it’s just a lame excuse not to leave the comfort zone.

      Opposite to common misconceptions, there’s no wrong age to begin something. Henry Ford was 45 when he invented the Ford Model T car, which is considered as the first affordable automobile.

      Sure, for some domains like becoming a professional athlete, starting early is required. However, to learn and improve for its own sake, you are never too old.

      10. Their Attitude to Getting Better Is Contagious

      “We now accept the fact that learning is a life long process of keeping abreast of change. And the most pressing task is to teach people how to learn.” — Peter Drucker

      There’s nothing better than to see your surroundings getting involved in what you actively participate in. Oftentimes, the best way to achieve that is to inspire them and be the example. As Gandhi would say, you need to be the change you want to see in the world.

      As a life long learner, you are extremely passionate about the constant growth and people around you can sense that positive attitude. As a result, they start acting similarly.

      11. They Leave Their Comfort Zone

      Is it really better to step out of your comfort zone? The answer is always yes.

      You always embrace discomfort as you know the path to success leads through hardship and countless obstacles. Instead of being afraid of facing them, you challenge yourself to overcome more and more difficult handicaps.

      Every time you get out of your comfort zone, regardless whether you win or fail, you learn something new. That’s the part you love the most!

      12. They Never Settle Down

      “Knowledge is exploding, so you need to commit yourself to a plan for life long learning.” — Don Tapscott

      A sense of being clever enough is something you don’t experience. Without a doubt, you appreciate what you already know, but that’s never a reason to stop. You just know once you stop learning, you lose the amazing privilege humans have, namely an ability to a never-ending intellectual development.

      More About Lifelong Learning

      Featured photo credit: Christin Hume via unsplash.com

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