“This one simple trick will change your life” … you’ve seen ads like this on the internet. Those ads are often referred to as “clickbait,” and we scoff at their needy grab for our attention. Yet, if the gimmick didn’t work those ads wouldn’t run. Who doesn’t want to know about “the one thing” that will fix all of our problems? Unfortunately, as we know deep down, there never is just one simple thing that will improve our lives. Those ads appeal to our impatience, our desire for instant gratification.
When we seek instant wish fulfillment we are being impatient—hoping to bypass the work needed to be done to achieve our best selves. When we are working on being in touch with our Higher Self, being impatient is a roadblock to achieving that connection. Susan wrote in the last chapter of Feel the Fear and Do It Anyway, “The biggest pitfall, as you make your way through life, is impatience. Remember that being impatient is simply a way of punishing yourself. It creates stress, dissatisfaction, and fear.”
When we are on our spiritual path to growth, there are no shortcuts. All of us, at some time, get tired of putting the work in and not seeing quick results. It can be tiring to constantly strive and it’s perfectly reasonable to need a break. But if you find yourself looking for a quick solution—“one simple step”—then that might be your Chatterbox taking over your thinking. Our Lower Self doesn’t have the patience to help us along our spiritual journey and wants to be at the end of the journey right now.
“Whenever your Chatterbox is making you feel impatient,” Susan wrote, “Ask it, ‘What’s the rush? It’s all happening perfectly. Don’t worry. When I am ready to move forward, I will. In the meantime, I am taking it all in and I am learning.’”
Another sign that it is your Lower Self butting in and making you impatient is when you start to feel discouraged, as if all the work you are doing is for nothing. But any type of learning we do helps to expand our comfort zone, expand our mind and our thinking, which makes our world bigger and brighter.
“So often when we are discouraged and think that we are learning nothing from all our efforts, changes are really taking place within us. We become aware of them long after they have been going on.…Although it didn’t look like anything was happening, it was,” Susan said.
Whenever you learn something, the lesson won’t necessarily be needed at the moment you take it in. Sometimes spiritual lessons need time to grow and ripen in your mind and soul before they apply to your life. Nothing you learn is ever wasted. It’s all buried in your subconscious mind, which is busy fitting all the lessons together so it will make sense when applied to your life.
Susan said, “Sometimes you’ll experience an aha! and transformation will seem instant. Again, not so. Sudden insights are the result of all that has happened before. Your Subconscious Mind, like a computer, searches and sorts without your awareness and, when you least expect it, comes up with the answer.”
That is why patience is the key to be able to connect with your spiritual journey, to connect with your Higher Self. Instant gratification will only make you feel better for an instant and then you will be dissatisfied and discouraged again. Then you have to start anew on your spiritual path.
When we are impatient, looking for that “one simple thing,” on our spiritual journey it’s like we have left the path in front of us to find a shortcut through the forest. But in looking for a shortcut we find ourselves lost in the woods. As we follow the spiritual path, it might branch off several times, but we will still be taking the right steps towards becoming our best selves. It’s at these “forks in the road” that we learn to trust our Higher Self to lead us on.
The thing about a spiritual journey is that there is no end, only more journey. And that’s a good thing. Susan likened our spiritual journey to hiking up a mountain. It’s hard work, but every time we stop to look around the view becomes more and more spectacular. We begin to feel lighter and freer and can’t wait to keep going.
When we allow ourselves the patience to truly experience all the joys and set backs of our spiritual journey, we are experiencing the best that life has to offer, knowing that while our journey has no end point, there is so much beauty to encounter as we go.
“My experience has shown me that so much of the joy in life is the challenge of figuring it out. Nothing is as satisfying as those moments of breakthrough when you discover something about yourself and the universe that adds another piece to the jigsaw puzzle. The joy of discovery is delicious. I know of no explorer who once having reached his or her goal has not wanted to go out and explore some more.”
So aways remember:
Patience means knowing it will happen…
and giving it time to happen.