I Hate Patience
Patience and I have never been the greatest of friends. Who am I kidding? Patience is the bane of my existence. Telling me to be patient is like asking me to smile while I stick my hand in a vat of boiling, industrial-grade acid.
As such, I often struggle to enjoy the journey. I become too focused on my next goal or destination. How many subscribers to I have? How many listeners? What do my stats say? What do my stats say now? And now?
A few months ago, my partner and I chose to move into my studio and rent out our house. This meant that I had to move my studio somewhere. So I began looking for a location that we could afford. In other words, I required a free studio with lots of space for all my crap.
Eli's parents were kind enough to offer me a unused room in their house. For free. So my studio is now in Milton, about an hour away. I certainly couldn't beat the price, but how was I going to handle waiting weeks to work on my art or having to drive an hour just to get there?
Well, something magical happened when I went there this weekend to start working on some pieces.
Wood transfers require a lot of sitting around and waiting. But, they also require being present and focused. If I drift off to check my email (as has happened more than I care to admit), the piece will invariably bubble and be ruined. So I have to sit there and watch paint dry. Literally.
I've struggled with this aspect of my craft, to put it mildly. But this weekend, something changed. I realized that I could hear the wind in the trees outside the second floor window. There was no pressure. No need to rush.
I could smell flowers and dirt. And so I just sat in the sunlight and enjoyed breathing in the fresh air as I watched my piece dry. At one point I even laid down on the carpet to watch the way the sun cast reflections across the ceiling.
Here is what I learned about Patience this weekend:
- She is best taken in small doses. Spend a few minutes in quiet contemplation and then go do something for a bit.
- She is out of my class. I will never acquire her and that is the whole point. It is about finding something magical in the moment and task at hand.
- The setting or environment matters. Stuck in the city with my phone vibrating and people shouting and running around on the street below is not helpful for me.
- There's no such thing as just "staying in the zone." I wish there was! I don't need patience when I am in the zone. But the zone is elusive and patience is what allows me to keep showing up and spending time with my craft.
- Pursuit of patience is worth the pain. I created the start of a truly awesome new piece this weekend (shown above.)
I wouldn't say I have patched up my relationship with Patience. But I would say that she and I are looking forward to spending a bit more time together. But I believe it's an open relationship. We'll both be seeing other people.