Too much expectation makes us impatient. We don’t like to wait. We easily break the queue when stuck in a line. We are not afraid to use incessant horn when it is absolutely not required. We want things the instant we think we should have it. We want instant results. A brief moment looks to us eternity. At the click of a button, many things are now available, but we don’t have the patience even to click the button. We are becoming impatient because of unrealistic expectations from ourselves. Our hyper-connected life is one of the culprits for our impatience. Unwelcome thoughts cause our impatience. There is always a desire-expectation gap. More than the product, often the delivery time matters the more. We don’t mind paying more for same-day delivery. We often skip reading what we are reading. We often abandon reading what we want to read, if it is not available at that moment. We prefer to abandon, rather than wait.
Instant gratification is not a new phenomenon. What has changed over the years is the meaning of ‘instant’ and our expectations from it. There is competition, how quick one can be. We like immediate gratification. Long-term thinking is slowly taking a back seat. Despite so many negatives, impatience must have had some positives as well.
Impatience often enables things to move faster. It reflects that one is in a hurry, and many think it pays too. If one has the capacity to tolerate delay and difficulty, one is called patient. If one doesn’t get upset or annoyed easily, one is called patient. But in the midst of delay, difficulty and annoyance, it is difficult to remain patient. If we understand that impatience aggravates an already stressful situation, we shall be in a better position to appreciate the value of patience. The point is, how to respond to stressful situations. It is not easy to tolerate delay, difficulty, or annoyance, and accept them as they are. It is also not desirable to accept delay, difficulty, or annoyance. Toni Bernhard says that the recognition of the rise of impatience within you is important to deal with impatience. Often the causes of impatience seem external, but, in fact, many a times, it is internal. Our mind conceives of a thing in a particular way, and when one finds it is not happening the way it was conceived, one feels distracted and stressed, and one of its consequences is impatience.