Category Archives: patience

Sunday Reflections: Patience

Every Sunday I plan to post a recap of my week. What I did to pursue my goal. Whether I followed it, attempted it, and maybe, I even flopped at it. Your comments are always welcome and if you’d like to share something you did this week with me, I’d love to hear it. 

Monday Makeover Goal: Patience 

I tried hard to focus on Patience this week. Patience with my kids. Patience with my dog. Patience in the work world, and patience with myself.

The Good 

I took quite a few breathing breaks.
    My kids like to wrestle. They like to wrestle with my big dog. And I’m a momma who likes to coach others into their own self-realization, so after several warnings that someone might get hurt, sure enough, they did—either by the dog stepping on their feet, or scratching them or grabbing on to each other too tight. I closed my eyes. I held them and comforted them and we talked through what happened. We assured each other no one intentionally hurt one another, and I feel pretty good about that.

The Great 

I controlled my voice in a few moments where I might have normally fired off a little loud. ;0) I’m human. I yell. I don’t like it when I do. But there were a few times I caught myself. I apologized. I teach my kids we always apologize and why. I often say, “Mommy isn’t perfect. I mess up I shouldn’t have been so upset and I’m sorry. I love you. I always love you, no matter what.” We talk about emotions. We talk about the what and the why. I tend to be a little over explainer, and I don’t necessarily think that’s a bad thing. My son makes me smile. He pipes up right back, “It’s ok mommy. It was an accident. I love you!”

And The Incredible Wow! 

I have two examples to share:

    Ever dealt with a really difficult person who saw the world just as they lived it? Always through their own eyes? I know one. I had a run in with one. This past Thursday, they didn’t like the way I hung up the phone. They stood there staring at me, “Erika are you mad?”
    “No, why?” I asked.
    “Because you slammed the phone down. I figured you were mad.” They went on with how rude it was. I felt the heat begin to rise. I used to teach Customer Service classes, and I’d never ever, try to be rude with anyone looking for answers. They went on with their personal story. How if they were on the other line, they’d be really upset with me.
    I took a breath. The heat kept rising, and I will never forget the words, “but I’m not criticizing.”
    I responded in this way: “I am energy. Everything I do is full of energy. I didn’t mean to hang up the phone so loud. I don’t own a home phone, and I forget if the other person even hears the sound of the phone being hung up. I doubted they did. And there is something else, I had to hang up the phone loud, because the call right before, I did it too soft, and I accidentally left the phone off line for a couple of minutes until I noticed.”
    I could be wrong. In the moment, I really wasn’t happy, and I did say thank you a little more sharp than I should have. They stood there and I guessed, maybe they wanted me to apologize personally to them. I don’t know. That’s the story that ran through my head. Stories are never good when we don’t have all the facts. I didn’t continue to pursue them, but in the moment, I feel like I handled myself well.

And my novel? I am beaming with sunshine! I had a really great conversation with my step-dad about a chapter I couldn’t get past. I’d been stuck in it for almost a month and he freed me. We had a great brainstorming session and I flew through two chapters in two days! So in my writing, I am so glad I stuck with it. I stared at that pesky chapter every day. Every morning when I woke up I kept reading and rereading my words, going back a few chapters, getting into the motives of my characters. I didn’t give up, and that thought makes me so incredibly happy with myself.

And what did I learn?

I still have a lot to learn. ;0) And that’s ok, because I know, I am a work in progress.

Monday Makeover: Oh, patience, where did you go…

This past week was a test of my patience. Deadlines at work. Ones where I am the planner, the detail checker, the layout designer, and I have to make sure everything is perfect. Public Relations is a profession of perfectionism, and with many hats to juggle, it’s a daunting task to stay on top. And there’s days and certain weeks where I’m sure we all feel, we’re running as fast as we can to get work done, but our steps are just not fast enough.

Then something happens. An unexpected event. You throw on the brakes way before you’re ready to stop, and you don’t know what to do.

Tuesday night rolled around, and suddenly my little one started to cling. She wanted mommy. She wandered in the bed at night and she couldn’t get to sleep. The next day the doctor said nothing was wrong besides her fever, so you wait and you hope and you pray that’s it. But sleep became harder to steal with the little one in the bed every night, rolling around every hour, screaming and crying and I felt so bad. And being the momma, life stops until all is well again in the family, including work. Thank goodness for Grandma. She came to the rescue a few times when I needed it.

Friday arrived and the fever skyrocketed. Another doctor visit. Tests were run, but nothing turned up right away, until her oxygen levels were checked, more than once—the verdict? Pneumonia.
 I won’t lie. I’ll just say it. Sick babies wear you down. You love them. You are there holding them, but your best becomes way less than that, and your feel like a zombie. 
Sunday saved me. Finally back to a routine with her sleeping in the bed, and eating solid food again, we had a major meltdown. My sweet little girl tends to turn into an instant tornado in a blink of an eye. This time it was over breakfast and sitting in my lap. She worked herself up into a giant fit, erupting, and crying and holding her breath. My calm Sunday mood hit the floor and I had to do something different before I lost it all.

We all have our signs. For me? Instant tenseness. I hold my breath. My words get short. And I try so hard not to yell.

So what do you do?

Music works. Breathing works. But there’s a point when you just need it all. I needed a complete change in my environment, so I dressed the kids and we drove straight to church where I could listen to the music, feel the energy, and above all things, find my faith. It worked! 

But my patience is still running a little thin. So I’m making it a focus this week. I read a really great article on patience and in a nutshell, here’s what I plan to do based on what I read: 
Identify my common triggers. What are the words my daughter says that set me off? What are her actions? What can I do to keep them from getting out of control? What can I do at work to focus my attention and maximize the time I spend in the office, since now, my second little one is home sick.
I’m following a mantra: “You’re doing your best. Hang on,” and I’m hoping it helps. I’m also remembering to breathe and to close my eyes to shut out the moment.
 I might sing a song or empty the dishwasher. Strangely enough, emptying the dishwasher is the first thing I do when my patience fizzles. 
I also plan to look for humor and remember a whole lot of love. Because looking back, these moments can be a little funny, and I won’t ever get time or love back with my babies.

Who Knew People Actually Studied the Psychology of Waiting?

It’s like role call. Waiting to hear your name. Waiting to get off the bench on the sidelines and show everybody out in the audience, what you’re made of—to score. There’s ups and down, you feel hope and then rejection when what you’re standing around anxiously for doesn’t show up. 

Waiting games can get to you. The adrenaline builds up slowly. You can feel your heart pulse in your ears. You breathe faster. You feel warmer—totally depending on that one person to give you a chance.

I’m writing today because no matter where we are in life we’re always waiting for something. You’re first or last baby to be born. You’re new car you’ve been saving for years to buy. A house? A new job? Maybe a new semester in school to start over again and swear, the next time, you’ll get that A.

I’m waiting. I’m biding my time and continue to write up a storm. I’ve written two short stories and I’ve started my next trilogy. This one’s better. This one is based on a couple of eighth grade girls I tutored back in school.

So I guess my point today is about the next step and what you do when you wait. No matter what step it is, there has to be one and I’m trying to take my own advice—

To continue stepping somewhere—

To keep moving forward no matter what—

And to fill my brain with other things I love—

People were right when they said dreams never came easy.

And if you’re interested in the science formula of waiting, here’s what I found:

S = P – E.

In this formulation, ‘S’ stands for satisfaction, ‘P’ for perception and ‘E’ for expectation.