“Good things come to those who wait” We’ve all heard that at least once in our lives. Maybe our parents were trying to stop us from opening Christmas presents too early as kids or maybe you’re waiting to ambush an enemy army in Age of Empires 3 on PC… ok I’m going to be honest, there probably won’t be too many of you that can actually relate to that. Anyway, nerdy computer game jokes aside, patience can be good in some cases, but so can action. I personally recently started rewording the quote when ever I need motivation. My version became “Good things come to those who
wait DO”. Doing means not waiting around and taking action instead.
When I was younger, I was hitting a crossroads. I’m honestly still kind of at that crossroads now. I wasn’t really sure what I wanted to do in the future. I didn’t know if I wanted to just keep working, if I wanted to go to school or if I wanted to travel. I didn’t know what the best course of action would be. Lets call it my “Quarter life crisis”. I’m sure all of us have either gone through this at some point or are going through it now(If you’re in your 20s at least). It just goes with graduating high school and trying to figure out what you want to do with your life in most western countries.
I really didn’t know what the next step was. Other people seemed to be figuring it out, but I wasn’t sure. I somehow managed to falsely convince myself that if I waited long enough, the solution would magically present itself in my mind and the path would magically appear in front of me. I was also still very shy and reserved at that time. I wanted to meet more interesting people, but I hadn’t realized that I had to put in the effort to go out and meet people. I thought that if I just waited my confidence would magically go up and people would come to me.
My way of thinking was flawed. Obviously waiting can work in some cases like how waiting for your steak to cook before eating it will prevent you from getting sick. How waiting for your body to heal after working out before working out again will prevent overtraining and over training related injuries. How waiting for the walking man when crossing the street will prevent you from getting hit by cars (Hopefully.. Bad drivers are everywhere). Patience is great! Patience is also very important! It just needs to go hand in hand with action. The two need each other. Imagine if somebody went to the gym a few times (Action), but didn’t have enough patience to keep going and wait for their results to become evident? We need both.
I personally found that by repeating “Good things come to those who wait” over and over again, I could mentally avoid taking responsibility for the lack of results in certain areas of my life. “If I wait long enough I’ll come up with a great idea for a youtube channel” “If I wait long enough I’ll get a great opportunity to go travelling” “If I wait long enough I’ll somehow magically have a website. It doesn’t work that way! You have to actually take action to get things. I didn’t have a Youtube channel until I sat down one day and was like “I’m doing it today!”. I had to wait for my content to get noticed (patience) and for my channel to grow, but I needed to take action first. I needed to ask for more hours at work and cut down on things that I didn’t need when I was saving up to go travel the first time. I needed to take action which was asking for more hours and also cutting down on other expenses and I needed to be patient while the pay checks came in. The same thing is happening with this blog. I needed to sit down and finally just create a website. Waiting wasn’t benefiting me at all. I had a lot of ideas that I wanted to share in the hopes of helping people and learning at the same time, but I needed to create a site… so I did! Now that this blog is online and you guys are reading my posts (I’m very grateful by the way!). I still need to be patient though. I need to wait until more people find out about the blog. I need to be patient and understanding when dealing with criticism from myself and others and I need to take active action when it comes to improving my writing and conveying my messages more clearly and concisely. These all take time, but they also take action.
NO more what if’s!
One thing that really pushed me to take more action is the fact that I HATE what if’s. When you wait and wait and wait, tons of opportunities pass you by and you’re left only with “What would have happened if I took action?” “What if I did this?” “What if I did that?”. I hate that feeling. I prefer “What happened when I tried…” I’d rather try and fail than wait forever and wonder “what if…”
In many ways, sitting around and waiting while wondering “What if?” can be the easier and less painful route. Trying and failing can be a lot more painful than sitting and wondering. If you try and fail, you have an answer. You know you failed, but if you never try, you can kind of give yourself the benefit of the doubt. That’s what happened to me with Youtube. I was really scared to put myself out there and make an account. It was a lot easier to just be the guy who never made a channel than the guy who made a channel with videos that nobody watched. The same thing happened to me with travelling. Sitting at home saving money for the future was a lot more comfortable than investing the money into something that made me grow and learn about myself.
The time waiting really bit me in the ass!
I’ll tell you guys a short story that I’m sure some of my Canadian readers in their late teens or early 20s may be able to relate to. In the summer of 2017 Via rail released a Canada wide train pass that would allow young travellers to travel around most of Canada unlimited for only 150$ dollars. I remember seeing that and thinking “Naaaah, S’all good. I’ll just look into this later”. **Spoiler alert**… Later never came. All the tickets sold out while I was busy “waiting”. That BURNED me. I’m black and have never gotten sunburn before, but I assume that missing out on a 150$, Canada wide Via rail pass must feel the same minus the peeling. To add insult to injury, I met a girl from BC in Toronto that summer when I got lost one day and had no data to use google maps. She HADN’T waited when she had the chance to buy the pass. She was really cool and nice and told me about the train ride across the country and how beautiful it was and how everyone on the train was very open minded and spontaneous. I could have also been on one of those trains meeting all those interesting people, but I decided to wait. I know I probably sound salty, but I don’t let this beat me up at all anymore, but I instead use it as motivation. ( I don’t see the point in beating yourself up over things you can’t change. I always try to turn the burn into motivation. A blog post should be coming on that very soon!). See? If I had just taken action good things would have happened! I was ready to hop on the deal this year right away if by some miracle they decided to do it again, but they didn’t. Sometimes when you wait instead of taking action, you miss out indefinitely.
Now, as you can all probably tell, I’d rather just take action. I feel like I’ve done enough/too much waiting. I feel like most of you will agree with that with regards to your own lives. This is not easy and just like with anything in life if you stop, you’ll start to move backwards, but try to fight the current and move forward! I personally still have a loooooong way to go, but I’m trying to take as much action as possible. I honestly didn’t even want to write an article today, but then I sat down and thought to myself “If sit down and put off writing a post today, I’ll do the same thing tomorrow and the day after and so on. It will be very hard for me to get back into it”. As a result, I just took action! I sat down and started typing. You guys can do it too! We can all take more action in our lives!
Go forth and Take action!
This picture was taken in London, England