I’m Diana Swillinger, and this is the Renew Your Mind podcast. Episode 24 Patience.
DIANA: Hey. Hey. What’s happening, everybody? How are you? I hope you’re amazing today. I’m amazing, basically, because I can just decide I want to feel amazing. Because you can do that. Did you know that feeling amazing feels good? So you know what? I guess I was thinking about? What does that actually, if I were to describe that more, what does feeling amazing feel like? Because I say I feel that way all the time. I think it’s a mix of feeling content, empowered, and hopeful, and it has a river of joy running through it. Does that sound good? Some things in my life are great. Some things are still being figured out, and some aren’t necessarily the way I would choose, and I still feel amazing. I used to work with someone named Sarah Malcolm. If you’re listening to Sarah, she probably isn’t, but if you’re listening, thank you, because Sarah taught me the power of the word, and we’ve talked about the power of the word maybe, but the power of the word, and that’s a good one, too. She actually used to say both, and and I’ve abbreviated it. I just say and you can use it like this. Things aren’t perfect, and I feel amazing. All right, moving on. Before we dive into patients today, let’s do an itunes review. I’m going to read a review because I am really grateful for the support that you all are giving me through the reviews. But even more than supporting me, every time a review is left, this podcast is more likely to be found by someone who really needs to hear it. So please, if you have not left a review yet, go do that. Go leave the review you’ve been meaning to leave, because you are the one who is the driving force behind the Renew Your Mind movement. You’re the driving force that’s going to get all these amazing tools out to more people. All of you do that, not me. I just show up here in podcast. You got to share it. You are the driving force to helping more and more women renew their minds so they can start feeling better, too. So go do it. Go leave a review. And also, you can share this podcast with your friends. Just copy and paste in a text message.
All right. The review on Facebook I’m going to read this week is from Casey Thor. Casey says Diana conveys an um, empathic and loving message in her podcast messages that serves to mentor and break down topics in an easy and relatable style. I love that her message is Christian based and that her coaching comes from heartfelt, experience and life. These messages are important and timely as our will becomes more challenging and stressful. An extraordinary series. Thank you so much. Casey Thor. I really appreciate those words. That was very nice. And her review mentions the challenging and stressful times that we’re having in our world.
So I would say one of the most useful things we can be practicing when things are not the way we would choose for them to be is patience. I’m a mom of four, so you can imagine I would have a ton of experience practicing patients I do, and not practicing patients. I have a lot of experience doing that too, and dealing with kids who need to learn patience. Yes, I have lots of stories. It’s true. I know it’s summer, but just come on with me. We’re going to go on a hay ride. We’re in rural Wisconsin in December. We’ve got our boots and our long johns on and with my three boys and my infant daughter and my husband, and after years of having an artificial tree, we decide we’re going to venture out the whole FAM and go get a real tree. It’s going to be a beautiful memory. We’re going to go to the tree farm, have ah, hot chocolate. They’ve got an outdoor fire in the snow. It’s going to be like a perfect Hallmark movie scene. We could even just take one of those Hallmark checklists with us. We could check off a whole bunch of things on our Hallmark movie list just in this one outing. It was going to be amazing. So we get there, four kids in tow, aged ten and under, and grab a hot chocolate, and we sip out of the fire. The kids seem like they’re loving it, and after a little while, the hay ride’s about to leave. So we quickly gather them all up, get on the wagon, and we start a peaceful ride through the snow covered Wisconsin countryside.
Then about 5 minutes into the ride, my eight year old asks what we’re doing. He thought we were there to get a tree, but we’re on a wagon. He thought maybe the wagon was taking us to the trees, but it wasn’t. It was just meandering through the countryside. It’s not what he had in mind. He had a tree. In his mind, he had the result of getting a Christmas tree. In his mind, he’s thinking, we’re going to get a tree, but all we’ve done so far is go to sit at a bonfire, have some hot cocoa, go on a hay ride. I think he had enough at that point, and I told him the ride would be about 20 minutes longer, and he wasn’t happy. He said bluntly, he’s eight years old. He says this is a waste of time. So of course I did what any mom would do. And I told him he needs to learn to be patient. Then he asked, well, how long is that going to take? Our whole family still laughs about that one. It’s funny, right? But I think it’s funny because it has a lot of truth in it. Most of us have that internal resistance to waiting. We have an idea of what’s supposed to happen and then it doesn’t. Or it’s delayed, or it entails things we didn’t know about or we weren’t prepared for. And then we end up asking either just in our own brain or we’re asking God, or we’re complaining to someone else. How long is this going to take? How long until things are back to normal? How long until I get into a job I love? How long until we don’t need to wear masks? How long until my challenging relationship gets better? How long do I have to do the same thing every day, over and over? How long will this pain last? How long? There are psalms completely devoted to these kinds of questions.
Because being patient is hard. Being patient is a normal human experience. It’s a common journey for all of us, especially nowadays in our quick service society. Most of the people who get to listen to this podcast, we’re living the kind of life that if when we want something, we just get it. That same son that I was talking about in the Christmas Tree story, he’s headed back to college this week. He needed some new shoes. He just got in the car, went to the store, got some new shoes. He was home in less than an hour. If we’re hungry for a hot meal, we can go through a fast food drive through. We’ll have food and start eating it within like a couple minutes. A lot of you probably order on Amazon like I do. I was doing this long before Coronavirus because I don’t like shopping. But I want something. I go to Amazon, I order it. 24 hours later it shows up at my door. I spent like 2 minutes shopping, picking it, and it just shows up at my door. We get things instantly in our culture, and we’re so used to not waiting. So it makes sense that when we have to wait, it can feel hard. We aren’t used to it. We don’t practice it. We don’t like it. What do you think the definition of the word patient is? I think we imagine that being patient would mean being calm while we wait.
Because I think that’s what we’re taught when we’re growing up, right? You just need to wait and you need to be calm. That’s patience. And that’s partly true because being calm and not complaining is part of the definition. But it’s not about while we wait. Specifically, we’re supposed to be calm and without complaint. The definition of patience says while we bear pains or trials. The Webster Dictionary also says it’s to be steadfast despite opposition, difficulty or adversity. So when I look at the definition, what patience is, do you see what I’m seeing? Patience is not just waiting calmly. Patience is more about suffering well. And that is something we just don’t do. We’re just not good at that suffering. Well, last week, my adult son Eddie was frustrated because his car brakes were grinding and he just had them fixed a couple of weeks earlier. So he’s like, Why are they grinding? Why is there always something wrong with my car? I could kind of hear this happening in his head when I read his text message. He vented this frustration to me and he suggested he just might give up on being a car owner altogether.
The car noises, the problems, repairs, money, appointments, mechanic, all of it, it just seemed too much. So I got him on the phone and asked a couple of questions at first, and I just let him vent. He’s one of my kids that actually lets me coach him whenever he has given me full permission. Even then, I hardly do it much, actually, just in case any of you have imagined me as a coach going around coaching my family. And my kids are so lucky. They get coached all the time. I don’t. I coach this son Eddie, because occasionally because he’s asked for it, and my daughter seldomly, um, because she’s interested in it as well, but only with their permission. Otherwise I’m just showing up as me. They’re just showing up as them. We have a normal family life. No coaching involved. Just thought I’d mention that. But anyway, this was a moment where I kind of knew eddie could use a little bit of coaching. So he’s a spiritual guy and he wants to live his life for God. I know that really well. So I asked him, how does God grow your character? And he answered through challenges. And I’m like, Yep. And sometimes we think God’s going to help us grow through some big challenges. And so we go through life getting all prepared for some really big challenges that we can imagine. And we play in our mind how we’ll respond, how we’ll do it. Well, when that trial comes and we get ready for it and he’s agreeing, then I asked, what if God wants to grow your character through your breaks grinding? Will you take that trial? Will you do that suffering? It’s not the kind of suffering you would have chosen, but actually, usually when it’s a trial that we would choose, we’re not going to grow as much through it. It’s usually one we wouldn’t choose.
I said, Is it possible that your brakes are grinding right now so you have an opportunity to grow? He’s always wanting to grow in his faith and in his character. He’s talking about it all the time. I’m like, buddy, your breaks. Grinding. That’s what you want. Listen, everybody. God promises that we’re going to have suffering and trials of all sorts of kinds. But then what do we do when a trial comes? We’re like, uh oh, not this one, or when’s this going to be over? Or this one’s too much. And we resist. And as soon as we resist, we block ourselves from growing. Now we’re just in a fight, trying to resist everything that comes along with that suffering. You know, in the dictionary, I was talking about the definition for patience. The number one synonym for patience. I said synonym correctly. I thought I was going to stumble over that. I did it. The number one synonym for patience is long suffering. Suffering is the same as patience. It’s a word you can interchange. If you want to grow your patience, you will need to step into suffering, lean into suffering. Welcome suffering. Thank you, God, for suffering. If you want to be more Christlike, if you want to grow. Resisting suffering is not how it happens. It’s in the welcoming of it. Who knew a podcast about patience would really be about suffering? Suffering is enduring discomfort. That’s m what it is.
When we resist discomfort, we are not going to be practicing or experiencing patience. And I don’t believe it’s coincidence. I didn’t research this. I’m just making this up right now. But this is exactly what I think is real. I believe it. I don’t think it’s a coincidence that the word patient also means someone seeking medical care. Because back in the day, people didn’t go to doctors for, well, visits like we do today. We didn’t go when we felt good. Back in the day, people went to doctors when something was wrong. People went to doctors when they were in pain, and they called those people patients. A, uh, patient is someone who is in pain, and being patient is being long suffering through pain. So I’ve wondered, we could just go back to that hay wagon that winter. What was my son experiencing on the hay wagon? That was painful. Maybe he was bored. A lot of kids these days find being bored very uncomfortable. Maybe he was anxious for it to be over. Feeling anxious is uncomfortable. Maybe he thought he was missing out on something better. I know he was and still is, uh, someone who likes efficiency. So maybe he was judging his family for just wasting time. We were not being efficient, getting the tree. So he’s probably judging us a little bit. Being bored, anxious, feeling like you’re missing out, judgmental. We would usually think those are uncomfortable. We don’t want to sit in them. Feels kind of like suffering. And then, um, we don’t do good being patient. This is all pointing to the remedy for impatience.
If you want to be patient, the remedy is to allow discomfort. How’s that sound? Do you still want to be more patient? I do my daughter is eleven. Another story with my kids. She’s eleven, she’s got long hair. She loves her long, long hair. It goes down to her waist. And she won’t do hair cuts, just hair trims. So I want you all to know there’s a very different experience. A haircut is traumatic and a hair trim is about all she’ll tolerate because she loves her long hair. So a trim must for her just means I can’t say cut has to be trim. Very short amount gets cut off and this hair gets snarly. And to keep it from getting these crazy massive snarls that take an hour to carefully get out, she needs to brush it twice a day. Well, last weekend that didn’t happen. She air, quote, forgot. And I had my mind on other things. I’m not a helicopter parent. If her hair needed to be brushed, I did not notice. And uh, actually by the end of the weekend, it was a total mess. It’s a miracle I didn’t notice. But we didn’t go anywhere. We’re hardly going out anywhere. We don’t need to be presentable. I call it the coronavirus effect. So a couple of days had gone by and her hair did not get brushed at all. And it was a crazy mess with massive snarls. She needed help. So she took her shower, she washed her snarly hair, put in a ton of conditioner, and she called me to the bathroom to help. So there she is, ah, sitting on a stool because it’s going to be a long one. I’m doing fine until about 20 minutes in and I am becoming very impatient. And when I’m impatient, newsflash, I’m not a uh, gentle hairbrusher. So this whole thing was not going well. Basically I was thinking her hair should not have gotten this bad, I shouldn’t be having to deal with it. And when I had those thoughts, that made me frustrated. And being frustrated is uncomfortable now. I was the one who needed help.
So I asked Shaylee to help me. Basically I said, Shaylee, will you coach me? I need help. I knew it would be a chance for her to learn how to manage thoughts better and manage emotions by helping someone else do it. But I genuinely needed help because being frustrated and impatient, now that was really uncomfortable. And I thought, I bet you anything she’s got some insight that’s going to help me. I don’t remember what her first question or suggestion was for me, but I was like, no, that’s not going to work. I’m not going to be able to think that. That does not help. And she just stayed calm. And she gave me another idea. She said, well maybe you just need to let this be an opportunity to practice being patient. That was it. It only took her 1 minute to hack my brain and bring me help because I want to be more patient. And I know that this is a skill that comes with practice. And, um, since practicing patience is practicing feeling discomfort or pain calmly, without complaint, I knew this was a perfect opportunity to practice. I need to be all in for being uncomfortable, and I welcomed it. I’m like time to feel uncomfortable. It’s fine. I can do uncomfortable. I don’t need to know when this is going to be over.
This doesn’t need to go faster. Everything’s fine. I should probably be brushing, snarls for an hour, feeling uncomfortable, and practicing being patient. I choose that. And when I started doing that, I did not start enjoying brushing. I still disliked it, and I was all in for it. So how about you? Are you in for practicing patience? Are you in for waiting? Are you in for feeling uncomfortable? Because God promises us trials of many kinds. Some are going to be small. Some are going to be big. And through each one of them, we get to have an opportunity to grow in patience and humility and character in lots of ways. So if you want to be more patient, you’re going to have to be all in for being uncomfortable. But don’t worry. Don’t have to do it alone. If you need help practicing patience or learning how to wait, well, I’m here for you. You know where to find me, too. I’ve told you before, all you have to do is go to the show notes, click on the link, or go to a browser and type in Rympodcast.com. Grab a free coaching session with me. You’ve been thinking about it. Just go do it. You won’t regret it. I promise. All right, y’all, that’s it for today. I’ll catch you next week. Take care.
As an advanced certified life coach, I help Christian women trying to live their best lives, but they still feel unsatisfied and stuck. Um, I teach thought management skills that work so you can enjoy life again and step into who God has created you to be. Don’t forget to head on over to Rympodcast.com to get my free resources or a free coaching call.