How to Be More Patient and Less Stressed
In this fast-paced world, it can be easy to grow impatient. Things as small as waiting for a slow website to load or waiting in a long line for coffee can sometimes leave people feeling frustrated and anxious. Practicing patience helps reduce stress and helps you realize it’s okay if something takes a few extra minutes. If you find yourself feeling impatient, here are a few helpful tips.
When you feel stressed, your breathing gets shallow, which amplifies anxiety. Practicing deep breathing can help reduce stress and frustration by relaxing your body and mind. This is as simple as taking a few quiet moments to inhale through the nose, drawing your breath into the belly and lungs. Count to four to help you focus as you inhale. Then exhale slowly through your mouth. After a few repetitions, you will find that your mind and body feel calmer.
When agitated, it’s common for our thoughts to center on the irritant. Though it may feel difficult to do when you’re stressed out, switching your focus will help you calm down and be more patient. For instance, if you find yourself growing more and more frustrated by hitting red lights as you drive, try focusing on green instead. Looking for passing cars, signs, trees, or anything that is green will help break that hyper-focus and shift it from negative to positive. Soon, those red lights will be less bothersome.
A great way to increase your patience is by meditating, a combination of the first two tips — focus and breathing. Mediation helps people constructively manage thoughts by allowing them to practice observing their thoughts from a neutral perspective. Regular meditation can reduce stress and improve patience throughout the day. Even just 5–10 minutes of daily practice can have a tremendous impact over time.
While the above tips can help you improve your patience, sometimes you must simply accept that some things can’t be rushed. There will be times when we cannot control the outcome: A red light will change to green when it changes and no sooner. Learning to accept that can help people let go of their frustration, become more understanding of their situation, and greatly improve their patience.
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