You are patient when you wait for a plant to grow in your garden. You are patient when a friend sobs on your shoulder after a heartbreaking relationship shatters. You are patient as you wait for your friends to change their clothes for the fourth time before you head out to a club. You are patient as your child falls for the hundredth time as he or she learns to walk. You are patient as your father tells you the same story – yet again. You are patient as your boss changes his or her mind about the report you just finished. You are patient as you wait for trains, planes, buses, stoplights, coffee lines, and cabs. So why aren’t you patient with yourself?
In a world filled with moments that set you twirling head over feet onto your backside, it is easy to try and hide the embarrassment you feel at not being able to instantly shake off the problem and move on when life becomes chaotic, but why do you feel the need to do that in the first place? If you can be patient with the world around you, why can’t you be patient with yourself and identify the fact you need time to heal your wounds – no matter what they are.
Some people fall hard when their world turns into chaos. The self-pity, sense of loss, loneliness, and defeat settle over them like a weighted blanket on a cold night. As you become comfortable with the weight of the sadness and emptiness, you may try to fill the void with substances that only make the matter worse and end up causing you to rely on a drug rehab center in Texas to change the situation. Understand that no matter how you fall, you can be patient with yourself and rise again.
Even when you have the best intention to make that new resolution every January, you may find yourself slipping back into your comfortable life routine within weeks. Change is hard! If you take a misstep, shake yourself off and get right back onto the path you choose. You are in control if you choose to be, but you must be patient with yourself and understand you may make a mistake, but it is only a mistake. Your world is filled with millions of moments that you get right, and only a few that may go wrong. Look past the moment when you slip and pat yourself on the back for the many times you succeed.
Just like everything else in life, you must learn to recognize self-patience as a learned skill and develop it. You must also realize that flexibility and patience often go with one another. Just as you can be flexible with your friends as they change clothes or your father as he relates his story once more, you must learn to be flexible with yourself. Grow your patience as you recognize you made it through a week before you had to have that latte and give yourself a pat on the back. Most importantly, begin again and this time, if you can make it eight or nine days, see it as personal growth and amazing change – and be patient with yourself.
Most of the time, change comes in the form of learning something about yourself that you didn’t know before. Whether it was how you felt about someone, how much you loved your morning lattes, or how you used substances to fill a void in your life, you discovered something as you changed. Learning to be patient with yourself is just part of changing your life and accepting yourself – but it is a big part of it.
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