How to Be Patient – Patience Tests to Help You Hit Your Writing Stride
by: Beth Rodgers
Writing requires patience. It is as plain and simple as that. There are obviously moments of sheer inspiration, when words fly out of your head and onto the page in front of you faster than you could have ever imagined. However, there are also those times when ideas don’t spring forth, and you feel the need to dispel this momentary lapse in thought. Sometimes patience is the most helpful idea to have at moments like these. Read on to find three patience tests that will have you working on how to be patient and hitting your writing stride – all at the same time. Jot your thoughts down in a journal as you engage in each activity so you will have an adequate remembrance of what it was like to practice patience, and how it helped set you on the appropriate writing path.
Patience Test #1: Be inconspicuous. Set aside some time to sit quietly and reflect on your day. Delay your list of errands for a day and take in the sunrise. Listen to the chirping of the birds, and watch as leaves rustle in the wind. There is an old phrase, “a watched pot never boils.” Ironically, though, this phrase does not hold true for us as writers. Being patient and setting aside time to do some of the things you regularly take for granted will allow your mind to start brimming with ideas and boiling over with the intricacies of your imagination.
Patience Test #2: Reminisce. Chat with an old friend over coffee at your favorite café. Look through old photographs that you didn’t even realize you still had. Remember the time when you did the craziest thing you can ever remember doing, and then think back on what made you do it. Create nostalgia that you can’t get past and consider why those memories were so magical, horrifying, emboldening, or inspirational for you. You must be patient as you wait for these memories to come to the forefront of your mind. Sometimes it’s been so long that it takes a while to remember the impenetrable details that make your story so unique.
Patience Test #3: Accept inevitability. Sometimes things can’t help but be changed. You must learn to roll with these punches, or life will become one upsetting trial after another. Be patient with the changes that life throws at you. Some of them may seem scary or undependable at first, but turn out to be the changes that make our lives worth living. We must depend on our patience to see us through these times of uncertainty. Think of a time in the recent past when something changed in your life and you were unsure about the consequences of what might follow. How did it turn out? Whether it is a good or bad result that came from your example, the inevitability factor still remains in place. It happened, and therefore had some sense of being bound to happen, so take it as it comes, practice patience, and you too will get through this. You’ll probably even come out a better writer on the other side.