Ever find yourself with the best of intentions in the morning, and still losing your patience by lunch?
Yesterday was one such day.
With Hanna at school, and a cup of coffee in hand, I started a blog post. I knew it was going to be a big project, but hadn’t realized just how long it was going to take me. I was slogging along, getting it done, finding myself a little more frustrated as the hours went on. I knew I also needed to go to the grocery store, and get back in time to put groceries away and pick up Hanna from school. The amount of time I needed to get all those things done was quickly dwindling. I was starting to scramble in my head, figuring out what I could rearrange and how I could still fit everything in.
Then GoDaddy called. And I picked up the phone.
The guy on the other end was friendly, polite and helpful. He wanted to know if there was anything he could do to help me with my account. I politely said no, I had everything under control, and when I needed help I always called because their customer service is awesome.
He said thank you, and then went on to ask me about what I do, and with a semi surprised tone of voice asked me about my SIXTEEN domain names. Which made me chuckle and reply that’s really not very many… there’s been times when I’ve owned triple that. I answered his questions, finding myself a little more annoyed by the conversation (and the disruption) as it continued. He kept asking me questions. I kept trying to get off the phone. My tone of voice was no longer sweet.
I finally managed to end the conversation and hang up the phone.
Took a deep breath, readying myself to jump back into this blog post, so I could at least finish something.
Then my husband pipes up from his office (aka the next room). “Was that GoDaddy?”
Sigh. (Why does everyone have to keep interrupting me?!) “Yes.” (You’d think he’d understand after 15 years one word answers mean I don’t want to talk)
“Were they trying to get you to pay them to take care of all your stuff?”
“No. He was just calling to see if they could do anything for me.” (sinking feeling)
“Oh. You were kind of snotty to the guy.” (sinking feeling gets deeper)
“Yeah, well I know what I need. I have my account under control. I didn’t need his help.”
“Well… he didn’t know that.”.
Oh shit. I’m such a bitch.
It was at that point, as I began to beat myself up for losing my patience with the GoDaddy guy, I realized I would not be finishing the blog post today. I decided to take a shower and get ready to go to the store.
While in the shower I was thinking about the conversation with the GoDaddy guy, why I was so snotty to him, and why it wasn’t even lunch time and I’d already lost my patience. It’s amazing how insightful the shower makes me.
5 Simple Actions You Can Take to
Not Lose Your Patience Before Lunch
1. Don’t skip meditation
When I know I’ve got a lot to pack into my morning I sometimes (and every time it’s a big mistake) skip meditation. I don’t know why I think those few minutes are going to serve me better somewhere else, because they never do. There are so many benefits to meditating I can’t believe I ever think it’s a good idea to skip it.
2. Eat, dammit
3. Don’t answer the phone if you don’t have time to talk
This is my downfall. I don’t know what it is about a ringing phone, but I can’t not answer it. However, as I was thinking in the shower, about the last few phone calls I’ve answered when I was doing something else, they all ended with me being snotty. (I think I should call my mom and apologize.) There’s no rule that says, just because the phone rings you have to answer it. If you’re busy, in the middle of something, or even feeling a little “off”, don’t answer the phone. It will go to voicemail, and if it was important they’ll leave a message. If it’s killing you that you didn’t answer the phone, check your messages… if it’s really important (which chances are it’s not) you can decide to call the person back. Once you decide to call them back you’ve also made the decision that you have time for this call, and can adjust your mindset accordingly.
4. Don’t plan projects bigger than the time you have to spend.
I knew I only had a few hours to get that blog post done. Which is usually more than enough time. However, I have been trying some new things, and I just didn’t realize how much time it was going to take. Although, if I’d really thought about all the work that was going into the post I would have seen it would have been better to give myself a week to work on it, little bit at a time, so it stayed fun, and scheduled it for next week. (which is what I ended up doing… stay tuned for that post next week. )
If you know you’ve only got a small amount of time, don’t start a big project. I’m sure there are other things you can do that will fit in the time you have available… choose one of those things instead. It takes the pressure off and you still end up with something accomplished at the end of your time.
5. Identify triggers.
This one comes straight from The Orange Rhino. You’ve got to identify your triggers, what is it that makes you lose your patience? I’ve read this over and over and still hadn’t done the work. I decided to think about it this time. While in the shower, I replayed the conversation with the GoDaddy guy in my head a few times. As this conversation, and my reaction played out in my head, more conversations that had created the same reaction started flowing in as well.
I realized, it is so frustrating to me when people don’t take no for an answer. I told the guy I had things under control. I was polite. I was nice at that point, and yet he kept pushing. He kept asking. He kept intruding. I guess through my years I’ve learned if you get bitchy, people leave you alone. It’s not the most skillful way to handle situations, with that being said, it works.
This scenario happens over and over again with my kiddo. I tell her no. She pushes and pushes and pushes, until I lose it.
Well this is some good information. Even though my default reaction may work, it’s not in alignment with the person I want to be. Understanding this opens up space for change.
Now, as outlined in the steps given by the Orange Rhino, I can do something different, I can create a preventative measure plan. I am not sure what it is yet, but I’ve at least identified a trigger, and can start trying different things to see what will work to get me through those triggers without alerting the inner bitch her services are needed.
There you have it, 5 simple actions you can take to not lose your patience before lunch. You may be trying to blow off #1, maybe you haven’t gotten a meditation practice started yet, or maybe you don’t think you “can” meditate. I strongly encourage you to start. My meditation practice started with meditation videos, then moved to 2 minutes, just watching my breath. It’s grown to 20+ minutes of mantra meditation with my treasured mala, and continues to grow over time. You don’t have to start big, but start. It will become the part of your day you look forward to most. Meditation videos are a great way to get started. You don’t even have to go hunt them down. You can have them delivered to your inbox every morning. Click the image below to see how.
What actions do you take to keep from losing it before lunch?