Election day was November 3rd. Today is November 6th. We don’t yet know who will be the president of our country for the next four years. We are waiting.
Some people use distraction to help them wait. They will focus on anything else except for the thing they are waiting for. Others over-focus on what’s being waited on. They struggle to pay attention to anything else. For me, I have always struggled with patience; it’s not my strong suit. I am the opposite of a procrastinator. While many people in my life view this as a strength that I get things done sooner rather than later, what most people don’t see is how this can be a by-product of anxiety. If I don’t get it done now, then what will happen? The same way that over-procrastination can wreak havoc on someone’s life (because nothing ever gets done and things get missed), so can doing too much (because you’re juggling all the things at once and driving yourself crazy). A lack of patience is a difficult thing to struggle with.
Part of the reason why struggling with patience is so difficult is because of situations like this presidential election. Sure, there are plenty of things in life that you can get done, accomplish, check off your to-do list yourself, etc. There are many more things where you have no choice but to…wait. No one can make this election process move any faster. If you are used to doing and being busy, waiting can feel like torture. I have definitely been that person checking the current election results at least 10 times a day to see what’s happening and if we have an answer yet. I am wanting to know and not knowing is uncomfortable.
For many people, their challenges with waiting show up in their relationships with others. Waiting for that friend who is chronically late. Waiting for their roommate to do the dishes like they promised. Or even bigger yet, waiting for their partner to finally pop the question or say that they are ready to have children. When you enter into a serious romantic relationship with someone, life is no longer on just your schedule or your timeline. You will have to wait. And whether or not you are able to do that can make or break your relationship. For me, most of the time when something feels “off” or not right to me in a relationship with another person, it doesn’t tend to have to do with them. A lot of the time it has to do with me and my impatience. When I can find patience, I find peace.
They say “time heals all wounds.” This saying rings true time and time again. When we do take a “wait and see” approach to situations outside of our control, we eventually get an answer one way or another. So for now, we continue to wait for something hugely important as the results of this election unfold. And I will continue to try my best to be patient.