Last post we talked about PATIENCE with situations and circumstances in our lives but today I'm going talk about PATIENCE with the people in our lives. For some of us this is a much harder assignment than the other.
What is the root of impatience with others? Usually, we become impatient when someone disagrees with us, when we don't get our way, when we are too tired or hungry or because we are oversensitive.
So knowing what the root of impatience is, which is mostly a lot about us, maybe a little pride and self-absorption or lack of self-control (not eating or sleeping like we should) we can once again realize that being PATIENT with people is like most character traits we have discussed, it is up to us - it is a choice - a habit - a discipline. Don't you just hate it!!
One thing to note is the people that irritate us the most will be people we don't understand. Either we don't understand why they are acting like they are or we don't understand their type of temperament.
So How Can You Become a More PATIENT Person?
1. As with most things it begins as changing our thought process, instead of becoming gripped with tension and impatience at something someone is doing or saying to you - change your thoughts, think about the possibility that this person is going through or has gone through something really hard. We live in a difficult world at a difficult time and we have no idea what people are dealing with right now. Even people we think we know well many times have overwhelming problems in their lives that they may be ashamed to talk about even to those closest to them.....so give people a break, give them some grace.
2. Try to think from a different perspective, we usually think what people say means the same thing as we mean when we say something. You can't know others motives until they reveal them and you can't know what they mean until they clarify them. Ask clarifying questions and then really listen.
3. On your own, you must decide to be patient. You alone, must make the decision, and can not expect anyone to give you patience. This can be the hardest part, so you can help yourself by writing a note on your mirror, on your fridge, somewhere you will see it every day, that can simply say 'Be patient.' A simple reminder such as this can make a big change in your life.
Ask yourself which ones of the below statements you need to work on the most.
When I feel impatient do I try to remember that I probably don't know the person's motives?
When I feel impatient do I try to assume that I probably don't know what the person means?
When I feel impatient do I seek first to understand?
When I feel impatient do I ask clarifying questions?
When I feel impatient do I give the person a break?
When I feel impatient do I listen before I speak?
When I feel impatient do I remember God accepts me so I need to accept others?
When I feel impatient do I ignore small insults?
A person's wisdom yields patience; it is to one's glory to overlook an offense. Proverbs 19:11