Interesting how patience becomes something that you have an abundance of after you've personally gone through enough turmoil, trauma, recovery and reflection. I am a patient woman, I always have been and through the refining process that is life I know that my patience has increased along with clarity.
It seems to me that we can become impatient when we limit our focus to the microcosm of what is going on around us and when our expectations overwhelm us limiting our tolerance of natural evolution, inevitable change, human unpredictability and even fate.
There are so many variables to life, so much chaos - controlled or otherwise, yet we like things organized and in nice, neat piles. We get upset when outcomes vary or worse, fail to meet what's expected. This causes an awful lot of unnecessary stress and turmoil and when you spend enough time in the company of people that react this way to change, or when you consciously live and experience enough of it yourself, you realize that there has to be a simple way to increase patience and clarity which would lead to a better life.
Of course, learning our lessons the first time around is preferred, but most of us don't get it on the first try. Probably because there is usually some disconnect between our behavior and the way we see our behavior, if we're even looking or paying attention. There is a certain amount of living consciously that one needs to do first in order to even recognize a lack of patience and clarity. If you get that far, the ability to recognize you can change, or increase your patience immediately if you wanted to by living more consciously and being more responsible for your intolerance, wouldn't be far behind but it takes some effort. It takes just a little introspection. It's not mysterious at all, no mumbo-jumbo, no hockus-pockus.
Conscious living, paying attention, or living in the present moment is not a concept but a way of re-conditioning your conditioned mind. Most of the way we do things these days tends to be on autopilot. People are not giving much thought to what they're doing, how they're doing it or how they're affecting the world around them. They're just going about their lives they way they always have, complaining and hoping things will change. The good news is that clarity teaches us change is always good, always available and inevitable, so why not make the change you know will make a positive difference in your life?
Unfortunately, change can be scary and no one really likes discomfort, let alone fear. It's sometimes easier to hang onto the old way of doing things because at least you know what the results will be, good and bad. You have to admit though, it's a way of sleep-walking through your life. If there is even a small part of you that recognizes that change needs to happen and you're resisting - that's a good sign. You're at least observing. The doing will come later with more observation, but if you're not yet aware, you've not yet begun.
And there's the disconnect; we'd sometimes rather hang onto that which we know doesn't work because at least we can tolerate that tried and true, proven outcome albeit sub par. We don't have the patience or the clarity to make the necessary changes toward an outcome that yes, may be unpredictable, but may prove to be excellent in its' return far exceeding the lowest expectation which you settled for anyway.
How did that rut become a way of life?
How can we not reflect on our own lives hourly and see that we are not responsible for outcome, our connection to outcome and our need to control the outcome? Let me repeat, we are not.
We are responsible for doing our absolute best.
Do your best and do not worry about outcome...keep moving. If you are doing your best, the outcome will be glorious no matter what - even if on the surface it looks unsettled. Time has a way of bringing good works to light long after the plow has been lifted. Don't forget, this is about patience and clarity afterall.
Conscious living, reflective and introspective living and learning to release outcome into the ether, are ways in which you will increase your patience and clarity. Becoming more aware of who you are, how you behave, how you treat others and what unrealistic expectations you may burden yoursel,f or others with, can only better your microcosm of life, as well as the macrocosm that is the world. When you close your heart and you close your arms across your chest and say to the world, "it's my way or the highway", you will reap what you sow.
On the other hand, if you leave your heart open and limit your expression of disappointment when the outcome isn't exactly what you had hoped for, perhaps you're making room for other magical happenings that your mind couldn't even conceive of. The world is a magical place and when we convince ourselves that we have it all figured out we limit the influx of light, information, holiness, and glory where patience and clarity come from.
Once you realize that you have no idea who and what you are, hopefully humility will lead you to prayer and inner reflection.
For me it has always been prayer and meditation, meditation and prayer. I can't deny it nor would I want to. Stillness, prayer, recognizing that I am a ball of energy, spirit and love, I can begin again each day hoping to be a better me and touch someones life, but never devastated if that doesn't happen. I am not attached to outcome anymore. I can honestly say that my life has taught me that each breath is a gift, a miraculous, holy gift. I am not promised a single one, yet I keep breathing (smiling).
And so, it is with much gratitude I say, through many tests and trials, my patience has increased as has my clarity - not only to help my own seeing and navigating, but I pray to God that my lessons learned would impart some wisdom and knowledge to the blog readers of the world, and the seekers of the Giver of divine grace, virtues, and all things inbetween. I seek no other source.