“Patience is a virtue” – and easier to say than done. If you see it that way, we have a few tips for you.
You don’t want to wait for the train, would you like to have an immediate answer from a friend and you are already afraid of the long queue in the drugstore? Patience is certainly not everyone’s strength. But can patience be learned at all?
Can we learn patience?
Life becomes faster, off- and online, both privately and professionally. We wish to obtain the best use of every second, waiting doesn’t fit into our everyday life – impatience creates stress. Patience, in contrast, permits us to wait even under stress and to set aside our own needs. When impatient, we feel overwhelmed and helpless in a situation. Something we don’t like at all, because our brain is more likely to be rewarded … But are we now helplessly at the mercy of impatience?
7 Tips for Patience
Science assumes that the ability to patient is partly congenital and is also shaped in early childhood. That does not mean that we cannot alter at all! In any case, something can be done about impatience. These 7 tips can help you in the short and long term:
- Distraction: We just can’t influence some situations and we have to accept them that way. To distract yourself from waiting, you can play with the lanyard, focus on your own breathing or look for tasks to solve (e.g.: What can I do alternatively if I’m late now and all stores are closed?)
- Reward: Rewards also help you! If you’re looking forward to your favorite series, your favorite chocolate bar or a glass of wine at home, you’re more motivated and waiting isn’t that hard anymore.
- Change attitude: You benefit from it in the long run if you check your attitude (over and over again). Realize that certain things and circumstances just take time and you just can’t change them.
- Rethink the timing: Does it really have to be an “immediate”? Isn’t a “equal”, a “later” or a “soon” enough? Question whether what you are waiting for does not have time.
- Reduce stress: Putting yourself under pressure and also time pressure, probably will not really take you any further in any situation. Here you will find good ways to learn serenity and get order in your thoughts and your day with Braindump.
- Use time:Especially in situations such as long waiting times at offices, you can also use the time for yourself instead of sitting there and annoying you. Of course, you can take a book with you – or do anything else that’s been on your to-do list for a long time (e.g. rethink time management?😉).
- Celebrate progress: Yes, you can celebrate yourself! Rejoice at small progress, which makes waiting easier.
Patience – for what?
Psychologist Sarah Schnitker was able to show in a study that patience facilitated satisfaction, achieving goals and overcoming hurdles. In addition, it lives with patience easier, you are not so quickly stressed and frustrated.
The legendary marshmallow test: Really a future?
For many, the marshmallow test is certainly a household name – or know it so similarly from a well-known commercial. Originally from Austria, Walter Mischel developed this test in the 1960s: four-year-old children were given a plate with a marshmallow. They are promised that they will get a second one – provided they wait until the test leader returns. They don’t know how long he’ll be gone. Some could resist the temptation, others could not.
This was to find out whether the children manage to give up something in the short term in order to achieve a long-term goal. But the surprising thing came after 13 years: children who were more patient in the test were more determined, successful and resilient than the impatient, even as young adults. Subsequent tests also came to this conclusion.
However, there are also critical voices about the relationship between patience and subsequent successes, as other factors would not be taken into account. A team of American psychologists reviewed the results of the well-known experiment involving 900 children, aged four and a half, and their favorite sweet. The participants were again invited to a series of tests at the age of 15. It turned out that their ability to wait for the reward and their later math and language skills only moderately correlated. After calculating other factors (e.g. family background), her ability to wait in childhood said nothing more about her later benefits.