“Patience is the companion of wisdom.” Saint Augustine
Patience. I recall a student saying to me years ago in all earnestness “I know I need patience, I just need it right now!” Eventually we laughed, but in the moment, he truly couldn’t see the forest for the trees.Today as never before society and our lives move at a breakneck pace. Today I laugh when I realize I’m starting to feel annoyed when downloading something and it takes more than a minute. When the internet was new updates often took hours, sometimes over night to download, or irritated when ordering something online and they don’t offer same day shipping. Most reading this won’t remember the standard tag line when you ordered something pre-internet: “expected delivery time 4 to 6 weeks.”
I grew up in a world of newspapers and magazines and 30-minute daily broadcasts of Walter Cronkite (or Huntley and Brinkley) to report the day’s news. Phones were attached to walls. Portable music was a transistor radio and the playlist consisted of whatever the station chooses to broadcast. For research: hard bound Encyclopedias and trips to the library. Spell check was a dictionary. Coffee was black, though cream and sugar were available, and out in the world if you wanted to grab a quick cup the local donut shop was often the destination, usually poured by someone 40ish who clearly enjoyed doughnuts wearing a stained white all-purpose apron and a hairnet.
Now don’t misunderstand, I love the technological advances of the last few decades and readily avail myself of them. I don’t want to go back. But we all need to remind ourselves daily to slow down, take a breath and enjoy the day. When we practice this habitually, there is much less chance of becoming impatient when someone has 17 items in the 15-itemmax checkout line, or who takes 5 minutes (at least it feels like it) to order a cup of “coffee.” We slow down by taking a break, a time out from the world. We turn off the phone, Laptop, Tablet, the TV and just enjoy a few quiet minutes of solitude, every day. By doing this we drop our stress levels and become more efficient (clinical studies show this to be true) and instead of being annoyed you will find yourself smiling the next time the person in front of you orders a half caff double pump mocha Frappuccino with a splash of vanilla extra whip with Hazelnut sprinkle’s in a double cup, with a sleeve of course, from that stylish 20 something Barista in the designer bib.
© Vincent Lee Jones Living In Spirit All Rights Reserved
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