Patience Can Be Hard to Cultivate

Sure, we are always hearing about patience! As parents, we KNOW we should have more patience–with our children, with ourselves, with the untalented drivers we encounter on our morning commute. We know this, but finding a way to cultivate patience in our parenting lives is an entirely different matter…

As for my struggles with patience issues–I find it far easier to be patient with my kids (most of the time) than I do to be patient with myself. Over the years, I have learned more about waiting for the right time for things, saving and being able to delay gratification and wait for results–but I do still have some problems around what I expect from myself at any given moment. I suppose we are usually much harder on ourselves than we are on those around us, but cultivating more patience certainly couldn’t hurt. The trick is figuring out HOW to find more patience.

One of the hardest lessons for me to learn about patience and parenting (in fact, I’m still working on it) is that cultivating patience is NOT about getting MORE control over one’s life, one’s feelings, etc. It is actually about letting go and not giving in to the feeling that we should be controlling processes and outcomes. I used to say to myself things like, “Oh man, if I could just get more control over myself and my reactions, I’d have more patience!” But, in fact, it is the letting go of expectations and not trying to control our reactions to everything; it is the surrender of the need to control that helps us to foster and cultivate more patience in our lives. As a parent, letting go can be one of the toughest things we face and one of the toughest lessons we ever learn to apply to our daily “parenting” lives!

Also: Developing Patience

Roll With the Punches

Devotions of Patience

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