Can you wait for it? The Virtue of Patience

“Patience is power. Patience is not an absence of action; rather, it is timing. It waits on the right time to act, for the right principles and in the right way.” – Fulton J. Sheen

 Patience simply means waiting in hope. Observe the farmer. The farmer first decides what he wants to plant (the purpose). Then he decides what he wants to reap (vision). Thereafter, he decides on the size of land to cultivate, number of hands to employ, seeds to plant, when to start, etc. (the plan). He also needs to have the capacity or employ people that have the capacity (competence). Having done all of these, the farmer still needs to wait in earnest expectation that the seeds he planted will grow, mature and be ready for harvest.  Sometimes, it would take weeks or months or even years before any sign of growth manifests from the soil. Only a foolish farmer would go and dig up the ground every other day to check if the seed is growing at all. There is a lot that happens in our lives and the wider world, the pace of which we cannot control, no matter how much we want to.

Patience is accepting that there is a time and season for everything under the sun: a time to plant, and a time to reap. A time to invest in developing your competencies, building your brand, nurturing relationships, prospecting, making presentations, following up and a time to reap dividends, returns and profit. For some people, their waiting time is short, while others in the same location, and under the same circumstances may wait for a pretty long time. Some people find water after digging just 10 feet deep. Others may have to dig beyond 50 feet deep and yet not find water. Some salespersons may knock on the door of ten prospects and close five deals. Another person may need to knock on one hundred doors to be able to close ten deals.

Patience demands that you don’t stop digging after 10 feet just because someone had found water and you hadn’t. For instance, the man drilling for water in Lagos is much more likely to find water faster than the man drilling for water in Maiduguri. Patience reminds you that if you dig long and hard enough, you will eventually find water. And guess what? Perhaps, cleaner water!

 If you are a salesperson, you probably know that the law of selling states that the more qualified prospects you meet and connect with the higher your chances of meeting your sales target. As a salesperson, therefore, your focus should be on having clarity of purpose, developing your sales competencies and prospecting effectively. Patience demands that you don’t quit prospecting because others have closed deals with less effort. Patience is a product of a positive attitude. It is an attitude that insists that delay is not denial. Patience is waiting in hope. Having done all the necessary things, stand! I really love the way Wikipedia analysed patience. Patience or forbearing is the state of endurance under difficult circumstances, which can mean persevering in the face of delay or provocation without acting on negative annoyance. Patience means exhibiting forbearance when under strain, especially when faced with longer-term difficulties.

 Patience is the level of endurance one can have before negativity sets in. It is also used to refer to the character trait of being steadfast. Patience is a function of your conviction about the relevance of your purpose, your commitment to achieving your purpose and faith that every labour of service would be rewarded. Patience is so important that all the major religions (Christianity, Islam, Judaism, Buddhism, Hinduism, etc.) listed it as an important virtue.

 Sometimes, you have to wait for days, weeks and months to secure an appointment to see that man or woman. When you eventually secure an appointment, you could still get to the office at the agreed time and wait for hours and still not see the person. You may get the feedback that you would be contacted when there is another window to see you. Patience demands that you evaluate how critical seeing that person is to the fulfilment of your purpose. Patience challenges you to deal with the anger, frustration and sometimes pride and wait until you are contacted.


To achieve your aspirations and excel in life, you may need to wait on the queue, under the rain and sun for hours. Patience demands that, just as the pregnant woman waits for nine months to birth her joy, you should also wait. Patience reminds us that even if we are enormously talented, hardworking and creative, we are not in control of absolutely everything.  A lot of unfulfilled purposes was caused by impatience.

 To be impatient is to feel and show hostility towards (or at least about) things, which obstruct, frustrate or delay one’s goals attainment. The impatient person is predisposed to perceive virtually all situations as threatening – not to their survival per se but their goals. Succinctly put, it is as if their survival depends upon the accomplishment of as many goals as possible as quickly as possible. Some people walk away from their fortune with just a few minutes more to wait, a few more feet to dig. Impatience is the reason for crash diets, fast foods, beating the red lights, broken relationships, inability to finish a book, not waiting for your wife to dress up, etc.

 Frustration is the product of impatience. Inconsistency, or what the bible described as being neither hot nor cold is a manifestation of impatience. Impatient people never grow the mental and physical muscles required to garner the experience and expertise that would help them achieve the purpose and excel in life. If you cannot wait for it, you probably don’t deserve it. 

“The strongest of all warriors are these two – Time and Patience.” – LEO TOLSTOY

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