Impatience, meditation and page loading
One of the differences that daily meditation has made in my life is that I’m more patient.
Am I the soul of patience? Nope.
But I’m more patient than I used to be. I don’t finish other people’s sentences as often. (I still do it, but not as often.) I interrupt people less. (Or, later in the conversation, anyway.) I’m more deliberate about the things I say, even when emotions are running high.
An example of a time I’m not patient is when I’m online, waiting for a page to load. While recognizing the absurdity of this impatience—having to wait FOUR WHOLE SECONDS for information it used to take hours of research to uncover—I’m startled by its intensity. When results aren’t instant, I’m overcome with frustration. Neck tight, shoulders hunched. And when I get that page-not-available message, and have to hit Refresh? Rage. Cursing. Ranting.
When not ranting, I’ve been feeling bemused by all the energy that goes into resenting the time it takes for information to come to me, practically instantly but not fast enough, over the Web.
And it occurred to me: What if I used those moments of computer-generated waiting as breaks—all those breaks I mean to take while I’m working, but don’t get around to? For ergonomically healthy stretches? For perspective shifts? Meditation teachers advise using the ringing phone as a reminder to breathe—I never could do it, too worried about missing the call—here’s an adaptation that might work for me.
Now, this may be one of those great-sounding ideas that’s impossible to carry out. Electronic devices keep me hooked. But I like the thought of sidestepping frustration, while at the same time interrupting that powering-through habit, and the physical strain and boxed-in thinking that go with it.
Nothing too complicated, or I’ll forget. And I won’t ask myself not to feel impatient. Just, when my browser is loading…close my eyes and take a few slow breaths. When I see the page-not-available message…stand up, look away from the computer, stretch. (Say! I could hit Refresh and then do this! To save time! Ack!)
Can’t hurt to try. I’ll let you know how it goes.