Patience is a virtue from which I do not suffer.
I am aware of this personal limitation and I endeavour to overcome it. Nevertheless being in a queue for the checkout at the supermarket drives me positively demented. It’s not that I regard my time as any more precious than anyone else’s (well I do – but only in the sense that my time is the only one I experience). I just hate being delayed. I loathe the sensation of being trapped in a never-ending queue. This feeling of powerlessness may stem from my experiences at the diabetic clinic as a four year old. Trapping a young child in a waiting room for hours on end, could potentially lead to anxiety issues about waiting, later on in life.
That might be utter nonsense of course – it may simply be the case that there is no reason for my lack of patience. And that I should simply suck it up and deal with it.
I try my best.
It is not the barman’s fault that the crowd at the bar is four deep. It is not the checkout woman’s fault that her employer has decided to open two out of six checkouts in the shop during even rush hour. It is not the bus driver’s fault that there was an accident on the M50 leading to tailbacks and one hour delays to the industrial wasteland of county Dublin.
It is frustrating however – the feeling of powerlessness over your circumstances.
However it is wiser simply to zip it. It is not worth the aggravation and potential fist in the face when you voice your annoyance.
Take today for example – the woman who boarded the bus at my stop and began a video call with her friend. The cadence of her voice was nasal, shrieking and penetrating, and naturally in an unidentifiable language to prevent me earwigging on some salacious gossip.
She disembarked at the old folks’ home – where I expect she was employed thanks to her white uniform. People who take care of the elderly and infirm get a pass in my book.
Far, far worse is when one is summoned to a meeting room for an unannounced one-to-one, with a boss who has time to prepare for said meeting while you haven’t.
Giving on the spot answers can lead one to making commitments that are both impossible to deliver and beyond my capability.
That drowning feeling, like you are wading in a swamp with no end.
However my practise at being more Zen-like in the supermarket seems to be paying off.
Remaining utterly silent and merely nodding one’s head to the machine gun like suggestions, questions and comments seems to take the wind out of my interrogator’s sail.
Must not commit to anything in written form. That could backfire.
Onward and upward on the greasy pole of corporate advancement to the dizzying heights of the middle.