“You must learn to be patient.”

That is what I told my ten year old son during one of my many lectures, which leave him discreetly rolling his eyes while sticking his finger down his throat. I can get on my fatherly soapbox a little too quickly, too often.

“You have to practice patience, son.”

The truth is, I don’t think I gave him good advice. I’m not sure that I want my children to waste any amount of time practicing something that I have never learned.

It’s quite possible that I simply don’t have a good grasp on what it truly means to be patient.

I want my children to practice self-control, discipline, self-respect, and respect for others. I want them to be calculated and logical, but I’m not real sure that patience is a virtue that I know anything about. I believe that there is a fine line between between being impatient and being determined, and you won’t know which side you are on until you live through it.

I can give you a thousand examples of when my lack of patience has caused me all sorts of painful problems. However, that same lack of patience has also been the seed which has yielded almost all of the happiness in my life as well. I like to act, and I like to act quickly.

Waiting hurts me, physically. I have never had a “want” that I couldn’t turn into a “need” (assuming it had good reviews on Amazon). I NEED things to happen now. I feel like I am having a kidney stone when I have to wait on something I want to start. I want everything, and I want it now. Yes, it can be a problem. I get that. However, a perceived lack of patience can also produce results.

It is my belief that a lack of patience can get easily muddied up with determination, obsession, drive, compulsion, resolve, and assertion. It is my feeling that a lack of patience is what provides the willingness to wake up early and stay late. It is my stance that a lack of patience is often what makes the athlete dig a little deeper, the musician practice a little longer, the business person pursue a little faster, the student study a little harder, and the admirer send flowers a little earlier.

I want my children to take risks, be bold, and not be afraid to fail. Yes, ideally I would like for them to have some patience, but not at the expense of missed opportunities. I don’t want them to wait for the situation to be ideal, because situations change quickly. I want them to experience life, and you don’t run out of opportunities for new experiences in life, so there is a need to act quickly.

Remember when Steve Gleason of the New Orleans Saints blocked the Atlanta Falcons punt in the first game at the Superdome after hurricane Katrina in 2006? It altered the course of history. It impacted an entire team and millions of fans. If Gleason would have jumped a half second earlier, he is penalized and labeled impatient. If he waits a split second longer, the punt is never blocked. He took a chance. He couldn’t wait any longer. The waiting hurt. He went to get what he wanted. I’m not sure if it was patience or a lack thereof that provided him the jump on the ball, but it paid off.

Be calculated and use some logic, but don’t be afraid to act. If it works, you are driven. If it fails, you were impatient. There’s time to worry about all of that later. Get busy.

Have some fun today.

Peace, Love , and all things Beef related,