I must be the world’s most impatient person. Whether it’s waiting for my coffee to brew, or waiting for that darn teller at the bank to hurry up and get to me, I find myself groaning and tapping my feet, wondering if I’ll ever get what I want. But walking my dog Paco yesterday I happened to glimpse a paper on the ground in front of my local Zen Center that caught my eye. It said “Be Patient, Don’t Wait.” Huh?
After reading the paragraph that followed, it dawned on me. Waiting around is a waste of time and energy. But being patient allows us be engaged in the process of change and in reaching our goals. Being patient takes focus, energy and determination. Waiting around implies inertia, powerlessness and anxiety.
Like a few other people I know, early in the holiday season I found myself gaining a few unwanted pounds. I got real with myself pretty quickly (nothing like keeping only ONE clothing size in the closet), but I’ve been sitting around DYING for that darn weight to come back off. The effect of increased attendance at the gym and careful journalling of my eating for the past few weeks has yet to show up on the scale. Yeah, sure, I know it’ll eventually happen, but c’mon, just how long is this gonna take?
I’m guessing my Zen friends would tell me that this, today, right now, IS the answer. Here is where I am and this day is what I’ve got to work with. Patience means keeping up the momentum, focusing on the goal, and staying aware of progress and setbacks. So, I look forward to having looser clothing and seeing my abs at the gym again, but for now I’ve decided to set some shorter, achievable goals that keep me occupied and moving forward. For one thing, Paco got another long walk this morning.
Now if only I can figure out what to do at the bank while I’m waiting in line. Maybe that’s when I could get out my food journal and do some calculating. I’m going to hurry up and be patient, how about you?