Patience, Presence, Process
"We can all get really focused on the ending of something. As I get into my thirties, I'm really just trying to enjoy getting there." - Kacey Musgraves
If there’s one thing I’m really not very good at, it’s patience. I don’t see the point in waiting, when you can get something done and out of the way.
But what I’ve recently observed in my own actions of late is that my patience is costing me moments of joy. Instead of taking in each experience and enjoying myself, I’m constantly searching for the next thing to do, or to attain or achieve. I find myself unintentionally wishing my time away by wanting to get to that next place; living my life like I’m on a motorway, and not a walk in the countryside.
The brilliant Matthew McConaughey is a role model for me in so many ways, but mainly for his wisdom towards personal growth. Here he explains the importance of perspective in the process, slowing down and enjoying yourself in whichever facet of your life you are working toward.
“Joy is the feeling that we have from doing the things that we are fashioned to do. No matter the outcome. Now personally as an actor, I started enjoying my work, and literally being more happy, when I stopped trying to make the daily labour a means to a certain end. For example I need this movie to be a box office success, I need my performance to be acknowledged, I need to have the respect of my peers.
All those are reasonable aspirations but the truth is as soon as the work, the daily making of the movie, the doing of the deed became the reward in itself for me, I got more box office, more accolades and respect then I’d ever had before! See joy is always in process, it’s under construction. It is in constant approach, Alive and well in the doing of what we’re fashioned to do.”
When climbing a mountain, the peak is always the desirable destination: the beautiful view, the sense of achievement and the satisfaction. Yet the climb offers a chance for growth, to break a sweat and to really dig deep. It is the climb that brings the most satisfaction; the view, although break taking, can be an anticlimax.
We are constantly observing other people’s success; on social media, in the news and on the covers of magazines, to the point where we feel like we’re not doing enough to ever be somebody. But don’t let the internet rush you; no one is posting their failures. You are exactly where you are meant to be in your own story, and on your own path; you'll get to your destination eventually, so enjoy the journey on your way.
We must learn to start enjoying the process of what we are doing, rather than continually searching for an end point; for a success story where we can say “I made it” or “finally.” Stop searching for acceptance everywhere you go when the only approval you need is from yourself. It’s important to set goals, and give yourself purpose, but learn to be aware of your thought process in the moment.
Enjoy the journey. Love the process. Live for the moment.
“Slow down and everything you are chasing will come around and catch you” - John De Paula.