The Torture of Impatience

‘Good things come to those who wait.’ It’s what we learn in schools, what we are taught by elders and what we read in books. But does one always adopt this? Being one of the transitioning generations in terms of technology’s speed and accessibility: No.

The present generations, from the new-borns to the middle aged folks (below 35) are all tainted by the curse of being impatient. ‘Instant gratification’ is what we seek. And as human beings, this has changed us in a way that’s not good at all.

Impatience is a disease that gives rise to many other bigger and more dangerous ones. Haste. Sloppiness. Frustration. Anger. Lack of concentration. Despair. All these are capable individually of destroying one’s life, personal, professional or both. One hasty turn on the road can lead to a fatal accident. One sloppy mistake at business could cost a company millions. Things that are better left unsaid for the general good might be announced out loud in the heat of the moment. The world is, sadly in this case, full of possibilities.

Is integrating patience in life possible? Of course. It, as a matter of fact, requires patience. Because all it takes is one hasty move to destroy all the progress made so far. It will take time to master this hard skill. For the fortunate ones, it takes a couple of days. For the unfortunate ones though, it might takes weeks. Then there are degrees of patience, like waiting calmly in a queue to being stuck in traffic while it’s raining, and still be relaxed (relatively and in the scenario of no urgency looming over the horizon, of course).

But, one might ask me now, is it worth the trouble for everyone? There might be scenarios where people need to be impatient to be more effective as well as more productive. I believe that yes, it is important for everyone because being accustomed to impatience might drive you insane one day when you do have to wait for things. Impatience breeds within like weed. If you don’t pull it out in time, it will try to take over the entire ground.

Being impatience makes us irritable and unpleasant company, a dangerous combination that is better left alone, both in us and in form of people around us. They can cost us valuable time and relationships and fill more regrets to later mourn about. I won’t go into how patience might be healthy for us but I will say this. Patience may or may not help our health but impatience most definitely harms us, and those around us.

There have been poets who have to written about enjoying their surroundings while going from one place to another. Unless the work really is urgent and calls for haste, why not take a slower pace? Why look back later and regret remembering barely anything of the sights during the journey? Why regret, not about choosing a particular road at a diversion, but of not even looking around to enjoy the road you did take?

I’m getting preachy here. I’m in no position to judge any more than the rest of the humanity and am just expressing my views. Hence, I have used words like ‘believe’ and kept things more as suggestions instead of having them come out as something like commands.

So are you one of those who seek instant gratification everywhere? Or do you possess the enviable quality of patience, even if only to a certain degree?


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