As I have grown older, I have noticed that not only has the number of candles on my cake each year increased, but so has my patience. I think there are a number of reasons this has occurred.
1. We learn to pick our battles. When I was 22, everything was my battle. Things were about being right and proving a point. Now, I measure what is important to me. How much does this situation affect me? What do I have to really gain from this situation versus the number of calories I am going to burn to prove my point or prove (at least in my mind) that I am right?
2. We have more life experiences. We work to balance out the things in our lives and weigh out the consequences of fighting for certain things. Similar to number one, achievements and accomplishments don’t come without a price. Are we willing to pay that price and are we willing to spread ourselves so thin across many different avenues that we become road weary?
3. We have less energy. I didn’t need nap time when I was five (though I am sure my teacher did). I need nap time now. I would rather spend my energy on situations I feel are worth my time rather than on ones that really aren’t.
4. We learn dependence. Unfortunately, in life, particularly in the work force, we are at the mercy of other people and we learn we aren’t fully in control of our own lives. We come to the understanding that in some regards, we are all dependent on others, and we learn to wait. Sometimes, for a very long time. *glaring at you Dell help desk and government agencies
5. We are busier. The sister point to number three. Remember as a kid when those summer days seemed endless? Remember two days ago when your Monday wouldn’t end? Jobs, mortgages, car payments, student loans, spouses, kids, bills, garbage night, dogs, cats, lions, tigers, bears, oh my! I need a “to do list” for work, my personal life, and my bills. Sometimes, I make a note reminding me to take the grocery list with me so I can remember what to buy at the store.
6. We mellow. The cousin to points three and five. We have less time on our hands so we have less energy to put forth to extra things. Thus, we conserve our energy to handle the things we think are most important (point one) and don’t sweat the small things. (Or we just completely forget about the small things cause we are so busy – see point five).