Patience versus expectations
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.