We are currently studying patience. The definition we’ve focused on is:
Patience is accepting a difficult situation without giving a deadline to remove it. (Character First)
As we’ve talked about this character response this little verse has become our catch phrase. I use this to direct my children’s thinking when they are feeling annoyed, frustrated, grumpy and so forth.
When I feel annoyed
I need to stop and think Patience
Recognise the difficult situation
Consider my priority
Decide to change myself
It requires self control, wisdom and determination to have patience.
Some other thoughts that help me with patience:
- My priority is always relationship first, and then task.
- I cannot change the other person’s actions but I can change my reactions
- Patience is waiting with kindness
Patience is a skill that can only be practiced in the middle of a trial. But it doesn’t have to be a big trial to build patience muscles. As soon as I see a situation that requires patience – whether a child has to wait for something, or has been annoyed or frustrated at something, or towards someone – I give them a gentle reminder of the character response that would be appropriate: patience. Sometimes it takes an external observer to see what’s going on – but the response that comes after that prompt is purely our own choice.
Situations where we have been able to practice patience:
- Waiting for someone to finish what they are saying before we say anything.
- When something didn’t work the first time, we’ve kept on trying
- Waiting, when we are running late, and yet someone still needs to find something
- Using kind words when someone doesn’t understand what is being said
- Looking forward to a playdate with so much enthusiasm it was distracting – finding patience meant accepting other things that had to happen first
- When someone felt hurt by someone else’s actions, we waited till we could understand what happened and hear their story – instead of ‘jumping the gun’.
Our study in patience is based on Character First – Check out some of their free resources on Patience
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