With 10 children I have been told “You must have the patience of a saint!” …Yeah, right. I guess I am more patient than most, BUT… I have my days! Patience is a virtue, so on some occasions I definitely will be lacking that one. I’ve been out in the real world (the area encompassing all regions outside of my front door) with babies in my arms crying, a toddler tugging on my pant legs, my son fighting with his sister, another one walking way ahead (evidently not wanting to be a part of this family portrait); and you would see me perfectly calm, correcting and organizing the situation for a successful result. On other days, inside the realm of organized chaos we call “home”; my wife would look at me just a little different and I would snap at her. Yes, I must be a saint!!
Why is this?? Is it because I put the best face on for the paparazzi (the people in the immediate viewing area) when I’m out “there”? Or, is it because I’ve spent myself emotionally controlling all those situations out “there” that I’m so exhausted I lose my patience and the first one I see who I know won’t punch me in the mouth I take it out on? My wife, God bless her, is also a practitioner of this process. I honestly pray for patience each day. Everyone should have seen me when I had my first couple of children. I think they would have had a different opinion. When my wife and I were dating, I was the most patient man on earth. I was also the most agreeable, understanding, great listener, etc. Things changed when the awesome, yet daunting task of fatherhood was placed upon this most willing candidate. But, it was a learning process. It has taken me all of this time to learn patience to its’ fullest. I’m still working on practicing it to its fullest!
The value of patience is un-measureable. Put a patient man up against and inpatient one in a pressure situation and the patient man would have a better ability to achieve success or a resolution. The patient man has a good level of control over himself, where the inpatient one’s limits are much lower, and they tend to get frazzled much easier. The thing I’ve learned over the years is that being patient is a great example to your children as our example is sometimes the best teacher. Being patient can calm the situation down much faster as it tends to spread from person to person and besides patience never hurts feelings.
So, how can we become patient? When we are fully aware of ourselves and how our body reacts to certain inputs, we can find out what triggers our impatience. When we know we are going into a situation or environment we know will trigger inpatient reactions we need to take some safeguards. Bring water, gum, pleasant music, picture or a book that puts us at ease. Take some deep breaths and clear our minds of the input that is causing us discomfort, calming you. Take a minute and splash a little water on your face. In other words seek out and find something that works for you, and keep practicing it. Remember practice makes perfect! Remember, trying to be patient comes down to a choice, so choose to be patient and everyone will be better off! They may even call you a saint!