Too often we rush through life, jumping in and scaring off others. Sit, wait, bide your time. Your patience will be rewarded. If that sounds to you much like the words that accompanied our most recent Moment of Motivation, that is because they are those words. We don’t often pair up a particular week’s Moment with that week’s blog post, but after we took our time and considered the options, this seemed to be the best fit. And it follows well last week’s post on answering the What-If questions that often challenge us, for to do that exercise you must be patient and consider all the many possibilities you may face.
It is understandable that we sometimes rush into things when we look at the sound bite world that our social media feeds have become, resembling a poster shop specializing in pithy sayings and turns of phrases.
Strike while the iron is hot! Seize the day! If not now, when? Take the plunge! Live for the moment!
All exciting thoughts. Who wouldn’t feel accomplished, striking while the iron is hot and scoring a big…promotion? financial windfall? life partner? But the person who literally strikes while the iron is hot, the blacksmith, knows striking the hot iron is but a single step of a long process, and not even the last step. There is much preparation that goes into making the iron hot enough to strike. The smith must prepare and maintain the fire or heat source, prepare the anvil, select the forging tools whether hammers, fullers, or specialized forgers, ensure the heat and light remain constant, select an appropriate blank to strike, determine where and with what force to strike, and then heat the iron and strike it. And after repeated heats and strikes, the work continues with dressing, tempering, finishing, and polishing. It’s not as simple as those six words make it seem.
Just as Hollywood’s overnight successes work many unheralded years before being noticed and cast into a production, hoping one day to be credited and then maybe celebrated, or as million-dollar sports figures nearly constantly practice from their youth team days with great expenses of time and money, even us mere humans must take years to develop into the successful student, technician, professional, parent, spouse, person that we are today. Living for the moment may make for a viable vacation plan but rarely is successful as a life’s goal. Taking the plunge is much better suited for diving instructions (and then only after swimming lessons) than it is for career planning.
There is no shortcut to success, and a life well lived is the success we all strive for. Patience is not only a virtue, it is a passion, and the most successful are those most passionate about being patient, learning and preparing themselves so they know when it is the right moment to strike. Canadian author Catherine Pulcifer wrote, “Learning patience can be a difficult experience, but once conquered, you will find life is easier.” We alluded to this in our June 2022 post Cultivating Greatness when we said, “You need to work at greatness. It isn’t something that just comes to you like hair color or blood type. Neither is it reserved for those who happen to be in the right place at the right time. You don’t have to lament not being born luckily great, nor do you have to have it thrusted at you! You can, in fact most do, work for it.”
Indeed, patience is a virtue, and it is also a passion. Be passionate about being patient and your patience will be rewarded!