The Virtue of Patience2 min read

Personal growth is a little bit like slowly chipping away at a wall—the wall that separates who you are today from who you want to be. You don’t know how thick the wall is. You don’t know how close to success you are. All you can do is to continue chipping away, day after day, with the best tools you have.

To make all of this work, you need to cultivate three key virtues:

The Meaning of Patience

Patience means that your transformation is important enough that it’s worth the wait. Even though we use the best tools, it is still a process and takes time.

When you cultivate patience:

  • you are committed to the journey for the long-term;
  • you can stay on the path even when the progress is slower than you expected;
  • you don’t fall into the trap of false hope syndrome, which is believing that the results will come quickly and easily.
Applying Patience

Be patient with all the times you apply the techniques and don’t get immediate results—if you succeed one out of every ten times, it’s not a bad start!

Be patient when you lose some of the progress you’ve made.

Be patient with the fact that sometimes you’ll need to return to the basics and try baby steps again.

Be patient when nothing seems to work, and you find yourself getting confused and losing hope. Allow yourself to have bad days—knowing that they will pass. They don’t mean that you are a failure, nor that the process is not working. They are just bad days.

Be patient when feelings of low self-esteem and self-doubt show up. All of this is due to the past momentum of your conditioned identity, and it’s part of the process. They are temporary, so don’t get disheartened. The old identity is on its way out, but making a fuss before it leaves.

Patience means releasing all sense of hurry, being willing to play the long game—without getting lazy about the effort that you need to put in now.

For a deeper dive into these concepts, see Chapter 20 of Wise Confidence.

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