Be patient with yourself and you'll actually make faster progress


Learning to be patient with yourself is a skill you don't pick up overnight.

In fact, many singles never acquire this crucial quality. They're continually frustrated with their slow rate of improvement and turn into their own harshest critic.

All of us move forward at different speeds. Comparing your place in life to someone else's can lead to jealousy and bitterness. That's no way to live.

Life is not a race...
or is it?

We're competitive by nature. We get a jolt of satisfaction when we're smarter, richer, or better-looking than someone else. Unfortunately, this feeling easily degenerates into smugness. Eventually we run into somebody who tops us, then we have a painful crash.

Being patient with yourself prevents this. It also reminds you that the only way you can truly win is to compete with yourself.

God made you unique. He wants you to build on your own talents and abilities, not get in a race with someone else.

Slow and steady makes it work

When you're not patient with yourself when you make a mistake, you impose unrealistic standards on your performance. Instead of taking a short break to regroup then resuming, you waste valuable time beating yourself up. You undermine your self-esteem with this self-loathing then have to repair the damage you've done.

We'd all like to be perfect, but only God is perfect. We'd all like to avoid the embarrassment of fouling up, but that's not possible. We're often harder on ourselves than we are on other people. Compassion begins at home. Cut yourself a break. You don't accomplish anything worthwhile by running yourself down.

It's infinitely better to make slow and steady progress rather than go too fast, get off track, lose time while you're blaming yourself, then have to start all over again. Instead, learn to expect missteps. Acknowledge that you're only human. Understand that it's no big deal. Gently forgive yourself and move on.

What God can teach you

Take a lesson from God. He is patient with you, so be patient with yourself. Yes, we should be sorry for our sins, but after we repent and receive forgiveness, we need to move on.

God has high expectations for you, but he also knows you'll fall short sometimes. Just because you occasionally miss the mark doesn't mean you won't get another chance. If that were the case, we would all have been done in our childhood.

The more difficult the task, the more challenging the goal, the more necessary it is for you to be patient with yourself. In the long run, you become the person God wants you to be by practicing Jesus' qualities of kindness and compassion first toward yourself, then toward others.

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