“We must all suffer one of two things: the pain of discipline or the pain of regret or disappointment.”~ Jim Rohn
Patience is a virtue, my mother always told me…and I’ll bet your mother (or someone else close to you) may have told you the same thing.
But is it really?
Patience can serve us in many circumstances, both personal and professional. When we are likely to jump to erroneous conclusions, for instance, or when we react in a panic and almost do something against our own good…these are times when patience is a virtue. A prior commitment to – and practice in – patience allows us to calm down, assess a situation and react with calmness and dignity. It prevents us from ruining relationships and from making rash decisions we might later regret.
However, what about situations where we are waiting for something good to happen, where instead of creating what we want in life, we sit back and hope they will happen the way we envision? What if ‘all good things’ don’t come to those who wait? What if, instead, the only thing that comes to those who wait is regrets at the end of life?
I have come to believe that ‘All good things come to those who wait’ isn’t necessarily true.
With respect to meeting life’s hopes and goals, this is definitely mis-guidance. (Sure, that’s not a word, but it works!) As anyone who has lost someone close to them or perhaps experienced a life-threatening illness or incident truly knows, LIFE IS SHORT.
It is extremely easy to get complacent, and also to save our dreams for ’someday.’ For many sad and regretful people, someday comes when they are nearing the end of life and wondering how all that time slipped by so quickly. Someday comes and the realization of so many lost and forgotten dreams hits like a blow to the heart and soul…and the sense or urgency that should have been present all along becomes painfully apparent. We have all heard the adage about how much better it is to look back and be proud of everything we’ve done and tried, rather than to look back and wish we had done and tried things…yet many of us do not take this into account in our everyday lives. Even now, for instance, as I look back on my twenties I think to myself that if I had only known and practised then what I do now, I’d be much farther ahead financially by now.
The pain of discipline Jim Rohn speaks about is that of making the effort to do the little things every day which ensure our dreams are met, and do not instead fall by the wayside. The weight of regret truly is far heavier.
The question then becomes, What will the future me look back and say to the woman I am today?…
I can see this because I am asking clearly: She will wish I was more consistent with my fitness, more proactive with my goals, and even more appreciative of loved ones. She will remind me to be kind to myself, while at the same time asking more from myself on a daily basis.
When we open our minds and perspective in this way, we can see opportunities and storylines to which we are now blind. We view our lives from a higher and wider place, and admit that someday is not only now, but is also coming sooner than we think. We bring our actions and our goals into alignment, and in doing so we enrich our current lives and our future days beyond measure.
Life can be a beautiful balance between being patient with ourselves and being impatient with our intentions, between passionately and actively pursuing our dreams and having the humility to allow the Universe to show us the way.