It is said that patience is a virtue. Not only do I totally agree with that concept, but also I believe that patience is a source of happiness. When we are calm and patient, we make it possible to have inner peace. How exactly does that happen? Well, let’s take a moment to explore that, by examining a few benefits of patience that always inspire me.
The career advice website Mind Tools has a nice article that reminds us of the harm impatience can do. It makes one feel tense, physically and mentally, and it disrupts relationships with other people when they view the impatient individual as having a bad temper and/or poor decision-making skills. Thankfully, the same article lists ways to develop patience, such as identifying and handling the cause of impatience, taking deep breaths, forcing oneself to slow down, practicing the art of listening, and avoiding perfectionism.
Here’s an interesting website I came across: The 52 Virtues Project. Now, it’s not specific to the concept of patience, because it lists 51 other useful things for good character besides patience, but its definition of patience is worth noting:
“Patience is quiet hope and trust that things will turn out right. You wait without complaining. You are tolerant and accepting of difficulties and mistakes. You picture the end in the beginning and persevere to meet your goals. Patience is a commitment to the future.”
This leads to the second benefit of patience I like to share: the ability to get big things done. After all, if we refuse to stop doing something because of challenges or errors, we will never finish it. But if we have hope for accomplishing our goals no matter what, we can succeed.
Christina Hibbert, a psychologist and mother, has a blog entry about 20 ways to practice patience. They include appreciating life, accepting things the way they are, letting things go, and being kind to oneself, among others. When I look at this, one theme seems to prevail: to be patient is to be satisfied with life. When we choose not to fight things in life, we become able to feel better about life the way it is.
The way I see it, inner peace comes from minimizing tension so that it’s possible to accomplish things and feel satisfied. Obviously, there are other ways to look at the rewards of patience. The important thing is that a patient person can ultimately be a happy one.
Anthony Lee is a prolific writer (medical by day, creative by night), an avid book reader, an enthusiastic movie watcher, and an insightful philosopher. He joined the Delivering Happiness movement in late 2011 after reading Tony Hseih’s book of the same name, sharing it with his book club, and adopting a newfound optimistic perspective on life. He spends much of his time thinking of ways to improve the world and inspiring people with his own words of wisdom and inspiration on Facebook (AnthonyLeePhilosopher) and Twitter (AntPhilosopher).