Photo courtesy of Shutterstock

Photo courtesy of Shutterstock

 

This is the final week in the series, so far we have covered:

 

  • The intimate relationship between patience and anger
  • Symptoms of impatience
  • Finding your triggers
  • The psychological impact of losing patience and its consequences
  • The psychological impact of having more patience

 

This week we continue to examine how we can all cultivate more patience.

 

Meditate

 

Mindfulness meditation teaches us to appreciate the present moment non-judgmentally and gives us a sense of contentment and peace , naturally cultivating more patience. Try these nifty exercises to become more mindful in your daily life:

 

The Three Minute Breathing Space

 

Sit in an upright position with a straight posture. Breath in and out slowly, your belly rising on the in-breath. Examine your body sensations from your toes to your head. What emotions are present? What thoughts are you aware of?

 

Return your focus to your breathing. Feel your stomach rise slowly on the in-breath and fall on the out breath.

 

Become aware of the entirety of your body and the sensations within it whilst slowly inhaling and exhaling.

 

Compassionate Mindfulness

 

Sit in an upright position with a straight posture. Direct your attention to your breathing, inhaling whilst the stomach rises and then exhaling as the stomach falls. Breathe slowly. Imagine someone very close to you that you love. Focus on how you feel for that person. Think what you would wish for them to have in their life. Love, peace, success, financial security. Focus your attention on the intensity of compassion you have for them in this moment. Let this feeling build for a minute.

 

Now imagine that person is now you. Feel the intense compassion for the person you love as now being directed at yourself. What do you want to wish for yourself? Love, peace, success, financial security? Focus on your emotions for a further minute. Now return to your breathing and finish the exercise.

 

Morning Mindfulness

 

Choose an activity to practice mindfully that is part of your morning routine. Take brushing your teeth, for example. Notice the pressure you apply to the toothpaste tube and the changing shape of the tubes outline. Look at the color of the toothpaste, feel the bristles of the brush on your gums. Focus on the taste of the toothpaste and how it foams. Notice the temperature of the water as you rinse your mouth. Complete the exercise as you finish brushing your teeth. You can adapt this to fit any routine activity.

 

If you would like to take a more in-depth look at mindfulness please read my article titled ‘How to stop operating on auto-pilot and live for the moment’.

 

Gratitude

 

Red traffic lights vs. green traffic lights; the more you pay attention to your green lights in life (or the things that go well), the more gratitude you have. The more gratitude you have, the easier it is to recognize how long it took to get those things, enabling you to develop a healthier level of patience.

 

Laugh and love

 

Laugh

 

When we can laugh when things are at their worst we cannot help but be more patient. The next time things seem in dire straights take a deep breath and look for the comedy in the situation. Laugh at the absurdity of it all, laugh at how bad things are and how hopeless it seems, but whatever you do, laugh. Not only will you be more patient, your stress will be relieved, meaning you are more relaxed and able to think clearer.

 

Love

 

Similarly, when we prioritize having a loving character towards others, we develop the ability to see beyond their flaws, showing our love by the way we communicate, compromise and resolve conflict. Indeed, when we are loving with our words and actions, we are calm, allowing us to keep our composure when requesting others help in resolving situations beyond our immediate control.

 

It’s easy to see that developing patience is not an overnight affair. I think it’s not only ironic but quite apt that cultivating more patience takes patience in its own right. How poetic that when we embark on the journey developing patience, the twists and turns along the way, in their own right, mold us into more patient people?

 

But take heart; whether you are at the beginning of your journey or far into it, the destination is world class. Imagine escaping to a haven, an oasis of calm, where love is expressed freely, relaxation is mandatory and fun commonplace. That, my friend, is where true patience lies. Join me on a one way ticket.

 

Further Resources:

 

‘Patience: The Art Of Peaceful Living’ By Allan Lokos

 

Have you ever considered the benefits of mindfulness as including patience? Do you consider yourself someone who practices gratitude? Can you see the funny side of dire situations or do you feel some things are beyond comedy? Please share your thoughts in the comments below to gain encouragement, insight and support from our community, we’d love to hear from you.