Counting your way to patience Times of India, 15 th June, 2007


Counting your way to patience

                                                            By Kapil Kakar

Patience is one of the most important ingredients of life, which makes us sublime, increases awareness through the five senses and also keeps us healthier. However, in today's demanding scenario, be it personal or professional, when man needs it most, he has started running out of it.

One needs more patience, when one's activities are dependent on others. For example, it may be waiting for someone or even something as mundane as waiting for the computer to reboot. Often, if a person is expecting someone at 3.30 pm he unconsciously starts thinking and looking at the watch 15 minutes before the scheduled time. By the time it is 3.30 pm, he begins losing his steam and the waiting, which had to only start at 3.30, gets converted into anxious waiting. The effect is that the person becomes restless, irritable, and negative.

This is not all. The body also has to bear the brunt of impatience. To safeguard itself from irrational behaviour, it starts acting by increasing oxygen supply to the heart, brain etc, while cutting supply to other areas. Therefore, if, the level of impatience is high, we unnecessarily overwork the body and make it vulnerable to diseases.

Give people time to act and react. If, you think you are about to lose patience start counting in seconds 1,2,3,4... till 10. To your surprise, you will see that within 10 seconds either the other person has acted or is about to act. Similarly, one frequently loses patience while switching on the computer. Therefore, start counting not from the time you switch on the computer but from the time you see the symptoms of impatience visiting you in the form of restlessness, pessimism etc.
We need to realise that by losing our cool for merely a few seconds we not only mistreat our body but also adversely affect our professional and personal lives. Being patient is not difficult if we are willing to change ourselves.