Exude Light, Walk the Trail with Patience
Oh, the joys of being impatient.
Have you ever experienced a time when you acted like a small child sometimes saying, “I want it now.” If we are honest, we know that we can find ourselves in this place of “I want it now.”
Well, maybe what we really need is a little patience and what we want so bad is not what the universe is ready to give us right now, is it because there is a lesson to be learned or there is a different turn we are to take ahead at the bend…
If so, how do we learn to enjoy the small moments and not put so much emphasis on the big moments?
As humans, we can be so impatient in our personal and professional life. If we stepped back to enjoy the moment we might find ourselves in a place and time that will actually benefit us in the long term.
Easier said than done, right?
Many times in my life, I needed to be patient,
and had to choose to be patient…
From the mundane things as losing car keys, sitting in traffic, running late, disconnecting because omg the internet is not working, waiting for a response, standing in line, and everything else that can possibly make us impatient beings.
My son Caelan will be ten years old this Sunday, he keeps it real on mornings when we are getting ready for school. Somedays I cannot find my keys or my phone (am I joking, most days). I begin to stress about the little things such as:
Am I going to get this workout in, oh I need to make 75 copies before class, I should of called mom today, crap I did not respond to so and so email, ugh I cannot find a babysitter and I have not gotten Caelan’s birthday gift yet, and on and on and on.
Caelan will say to me, “Come on Dr. McLost.” He began saying this to me when he was six years old. Every time he says it to this day, I laugh, yes, lol, laughing out loud. It gives me perspective to slow down, to breathe, and to limit feelings of being overwhelmed about the things in life that we cannot control at the moment. With some humility, I find strength to focus.
When we become impatient, we can become angry, frustrated, we lose our ability to focus and the feelings of being overwhelmed strike.
As a new baby in this world, when I was only five days old (October 27, 1977) my mother had brought me home from the hospital and decided to give me what we called “a bird bath” – a damp washcloth with a few drops of water. I did not like it! I began to cry, held my breath and passed out. I lost my patience during bath time.
I know right…what was my deal?
This continued until I was about four years old. I would be in the store with my mom and would want a specific item. I would receive the typical parent response…”No, you cannot have that.” She said no and yes, you guessed it, I held my breath and passed out. People in the store approached my mother and said things like, “you are not a very good mother or what is wrong with your child.” My mother would respond with, “Ignore her.” She was following doctor’s orders to ignore the behavior.
I eventually grew out of it; however, I am sure a few people in some situations wish I still passed out.
After a couple of years into my first job, I was so eager to begin applying for the next position. I wanted to be an assistant director or an associate director in campus recreation. I can remember my mentor telling me to be patient. At the time, I did not realize this was great advice. I needed to embrace where I was in my professional work experience, but again I set my focus on the next step. I did not see the importance of focusing on small moments. Now as I reflect back it was the best advice. It lead me to pursuing my doctoral degree and my love for helping others grow and develop.
As I was working on this week’s blog, I thought, what stories do I have about being impatient? Okay, okay there are a few to pick from; however, I am not sure if I am ready to share some of those quite yet.
Well, Thursday of this week proved to be a great example. I did my usual early morning rise of 4:45am.. I worked on certain tasks for an hour and a half to go to the YMCA to workout. Caelan, my son is on spring break this week, I got him up early and we headed to the gym. We got back to the house, I rushed as usual to take a shower and get ready (I have gotten pretty good at this – depending if it is an actual blow dry my hair day or is it a scrunch day and air dry kind of day – Thursday was a blow dry day). At 9am Caelan and I headed to campus.
Even after a good workout, I felt my patience running thin because I had my checklist in my mind. I was taking a deep breath well maybe not in actuality but in my mind.
First, I struggled to find a babysitter. I was not concerned about taking my son to work but still there is this overwhelming feeling about how will the day will go. Caelan did great, making good use of his time, reading books, drawing comics, and playing 3DS.
In the first hour of being in the office, the internet did not work. I thought how I am I going to respond to all of these emails…ugh!
In my mind I said, “Oh just great!” I needed access to our online advising information. My schedule full of appointments with students. As all this was going on, I gathered in our sport management suite to chat with colleagues and coming together reminded me that this is what it is all about, being present. We laughed and to myself I said hey, it is another day with random events. I need to change my focus and be here where I am now. As soon as I remembered to be present the day turned around, I realized there are other things I need to attend too.
What do you know?
My day was filled with productive meetings with my students, opportunities to connect with colleagues and friends, a walk with my son and fur baby, and a relaxing evening to listen to music and finish my Friday blog.
After these four decades of life, I am more able to embrace focusing on the small moments in life.
I do still require a reality check now and then.
When I do, the big moments happen and when the big moments do not happen, I am better at seeing that the trail I believed I was destined to take was actually one I did not need because there is another trail that will appear. The focus returns back to what really is important, the small moments, enjoying what we see along the trail. By being present and choosing to be patient we are more likely to exude our light.
Maybe our ability to walk the trail with patience will rub off on others.
We exude light walking the trail with patience by…