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Patience is not sexy. In a world fueled by immediacy, it’s only natural that we expect things quickly. The reality is that while most things have changed, the core lessons in life are the same. Just like yesterday, I’m talking to everyone who is just getting started out in life. I want to make an important clarification – Patience is NOT inaction. I lived a portion of my life thinking that, “Good things come to those that WAIT.” This statement is categorically false and should be changed to, “Good things come to those that WORK.”

You know that I love words with every fiber of my being. This time, I think the dictionary needs to illuminate this lost word: Patience – noun – the capacity to accept or tolerate delay, trouble, or suffering without getting angry or upset. In contrast with yesterday, here are the top 5 Lessons I’ve Learned with Patience.

  1. Get married when you’re ready – There is no age limit here. If you are ready at 18, then by all means, get married. While I would heavily advise against getting married at 18, only you know what “ready” means. I got re-married at 33 and I’ve never been happier in my life. When my wife and I started dating, we told each other the ugly truth about our pasts before we went out on our first date and we’ve never looked back. Tell the truth and lives will change. Trust me, I know.
  2. Only buy things that you NEED – There is a whole industry devoted to making us feel inferior and “less than” if we don’t have a certain product. Don’t buy into it, folks. You need food, you need a roof, and you need a way to get around. You don’t need the Mercedes, you don’t need a 5000 sq ft home, you don’t need top of the line furniture and cutting edge technological gadgets. If you work hard enough and eventually you feel you NEED those things, by all means, go get them. On the other hand, when you are just starting out, you don’t need much. Tell yourself the truth and lives will change. Trust me, I know.
  3. Keep a small group of trusted friends – The older you get, the more you will realize that quality over quantity is important with respect to your friends. You don’t need to surround yourself with people that agree with you. Quite the opposite. Place people in your life that will push you up by challenging you and encouraging you lovingly. Life is too short to waste trying to befriend everyone. Some people will just hate your guts in perpetuity. Just accept it, tell yourself the truth and lives will change. Trust me, I know.
  4. Start investing NOW – If you know nothing about how or where to invest your money, there are tons of resources available to you. Please let me know if you would like individual help on this front because I personally trust several people that would be able to help. Growth will not occur overnight but it will be there when you need it later on. No one got ahead by tucking money under their mattress and certainly not by putting it in a bank savings account earning .0000001% interest. Tell the truth and lives will change. Trust me, I know.
  5. Be free – The sum of points 1-4 is freedom. Don’t think that it will be easy or will happen overnight. Remember this is all about patience. Nothing of value is slapped together in seconds and you have to play the long game. When you realize that the “finish line” is an illusion, you will be be free to live a life of gratitude in the present, not in the past or the future. Tell the truth and lives will change. Trust me, I know.

I hope you enjoyed these two contrasting posts. It’s taken me my whole life to just begin to latch onto these ideas. It’s never to late to start. If you feel like you’re trapped and you need help, I’m here. Please email me at graciouslygross@gmail.com and I’d be more than happy to help you work through any feelings of “stuckness” you may have. More to come. I’m not done yet…