Pa­tience ver­sus ex­pec­ta­tions

Tillsonburg News - - OPINION - Linda hoff­man two­centsworth40@hot­

i have learned time means dif­fer­ent things to each per­son.

The pas­sage of time varies greatly for each event in our lives. some­times it goes way too slow and other times we don’t know where it went. of course, it is rel­e­vant to our en­joy­ment or lack thereof to the sit­u­a­tion at hand.

The con­cept of time pass­ing also has very di­verse sig­nif­i­cance to in­di­vid­u­als.

if i say, “i’ll get right at that,” i mean to­day. To oth­ers it might mean this week, in a month or at some point in the fu­ture. i have dis­cov­ered the per­cep­tion of time is quite var­ied de­pend­ing on pro­fes­sion, as well. To a lawyer “right away” means within the next two months - maybe. To a doc­tor “as soon as pos­si­ble” could mean eight months to a year - or more. To some de­liv­ery or in­stal­la­tion per­son­nel the time frame ranges in­dis­crim­i­nately. “be­tween 9 a.m. and 5 p.m.” is of­ten the best you can get from them while oth­ers might say “be­fore noon” which means any time be­fore 3 p.m. or “right af­ter lunch,” which means some­time be­fore sup­per. once you hone into and ac­cept these con­cepts your life will be much less stress­ful.

ex­pect­ing oth­ers to think like me is fu­tile at the best of times so i try to get peo­ple to be as spe­cific as pos­si­ble and then i sort of go with what­ever works for them. if they say “later to­day” that’s great. if it’s next Tues­day, i am oK with that. if not for a week or two, i got it. i am flex­i­ble and very pa­tient but i do ex­pect to take you at your word.

if some­one says they will call on wed­nes­day, i ex­pect a call on wed­nes­day, not Fri­day or maybe mon­day. i will wait pa­tiently all day for that call. The next day is not what you said or what i ex­pected so i am get­ting an­noyed and my pa­tience wears out.

i sug­gest if you re­al­ize you can’t do what you said, on the day you spec­i­fied, just let me know and i will hap­pily, and pa­tiently, set up a new day but do not just leave me hang­ing. That makes me very an­gry and you have lost me as a pa­tron now and in the fu­ture.

a friend once com­plained about the in­ter­net tak­ing 30 sec­onds to con­nect. i don’t know what i would have ac­com­plished in those 30 sec­onds so i found this funny. an­other friend gets all in a lather over ar­riv­ing on time for an ap­point­ment and hav­ing to wait, some­times hours. i do feel the tim­ing of ap­point­ments can be im­proved and han­dled much bet­ter in many cases but you have to ex­pect un­fore­seen cir­cum­stances might arise. To me, it’s an unac­cept­able but ex­pected wait so i don’t stress. in fact, i see it as a bonus.

how of­ten do you get to sit around do­ing noth­ing, read a mag­a­zine in peace and quiet, visit with strangers? how of­ten do you get to do all that with­out feel­ing one bit of guilt? would you rather be home do­ing laun­dry, rak­ing leaves, vac­u­um­ing…?

one must bal­ance pa­tience and ex­pec­ta­tions.

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