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How to make patience a big virtue for your success

Irrespective of whether you are a student, a housewife, a working professional or even an ordinary clerk in the Government or a person who is now entering the last phase of your career, patience can do wonders for you. It is one virtue that you need to understand as a very important quality. In fact it can make a big difference in this complicated world. Here are some dimensions of how to develop patience.


What you need to understand in your life is that patience is one virtue that keeps this world going. It is one virtue that helps to keep anger under check and all social tensions also under check. We often find people patiently waiting for buses, trains and even call taxis. They seem to have all the time in the world and are totally oblivious of the world around them. They are at total peace. These are the patient people. It is essential that you learn the art of patience by a) having a very long term vision b) spend and the "here and now"c) make others happy d) learn endurance and e) enjoy all the bright moments.

Have a very long term vision

A city that is already well developed up to sixty kilometers on one side is bound to develop to another thirty or forty over the next decade or a little more than that. Suppose some guy offers you a plot on equated monthly installments now, what do you do? You visit that place and find it is three kilometers away from the main road and except for the very odd bus, there is nothing there.

So would you take it or leave it? The person, who is always level headed would buy three plots and not one. For he knows that in the next fifteen years, the city has to expand only here as this is the real growth corridor. This is one aspect of vision.

Here is another. With interest rates on deposits going downhill, it makes sense to go to a Nationalized Bank, open a SB account and be sure to open small recurring deposits. Even Rs.35/- per month today, fetches you Rs.5000 after ten years. At Andhra Bank, for example. Rs. 35 is no big deal. It is lesser than the cost of good dosa in a very good upper middle class restaurant. Pump the money into the SB account and give the standing instruction. The computer does the rest. Just allow the years to go by. In ten years time that amount will come in handy. If your child is not very good in academics, put him or her into some technical skill that will match his or her innate skill.

This is exactly what we call as Vision. It is that quality that makes you different. Exactly how our parents, now into their mid sixties or even mid seventies, planned for the very long term. It was a test of their patience and they passed it. You can and you should also do so. If you are twenty eight, plan for your the next 20 years. At 48 you need to be an entrepreneur. Buy land near the main road, so that you can even build a row of shops and own one, twenty years from now. Today the land is cheap. Grab it.

Vision is a very long term concept. Just get into the act and feel the difference as far as patience is concerned.

This applies to organizations too. For example a very good entrepreneur invested in a plant to manufacture turbo chargers when the technology was unknown in India. Even the product was not that famous. But this entrepreneur invested heavily from his own pocket, in a fairly rural environment in Tamil Nadu. Along the way the unit made record losses. In the Management there were voices asking the entrepreneur to close shop or find a buyer.

He did neither. He counseled patience. Today, the same unit over a period of twenty five years, is the market leader. It is an associate company of a giant auto-ancillary company. Nevertheless, the entrepreneur succeeded in making history. That he had patience as a big virtue surprised the youngsters. The old timers who stuck with him are all occupying the senior managerial positions today. This is exactly how the vision worked out.

Enjoy the here and now

Patience does not mean only long term. It is as much about today, as it is about the day, ten years later. Enjoy every bit of today. Do whatever it takes to complete it. Writing a letter to an old friend. Keeping the house clean. Repairing the car. Enjoying time with your grandson. The list is always endless. There is so much to do today. Each of these activities done with patience, without getting agitated, without showing anger on anyone and so on will go a long way in building patience in a big way as the days go by.

You just need to do all that is planned for today. Once you are done, you have developed the psychological activities associated with patience in a big way. You will have developed patience in accordance with what is normally associated with people who are called "patient people".

Make others happy

The entrepreneur in the above example , had this superb ability of making others happy. When his own employees were under stress, he would counsel them, talk to them and took care of their families too. Not once did he cut down on increments and merit payments. Not once did he cut corners. His patience was superb. The rub off effect on others had to be seen to be believed.

If you are an entrepreneur or plan to become one, emulate this wonderful entrepreneur, who absorbed all losses for such a long time. Today, he and his company are laughing all the way to the bank. The unit is making record profits, year after year.

Learn endurance

Tough people do not last, but tough people do. The toughest and the fittest develop endurance in the journey of patience. Everything that is big today, would have started so small. Localities of cities that were tiny villages are today centers of massive urban development. We have seen it all over. There is no need to mention names here.

Each city and those who have settled comfortably now have had the spirit of endurance. Their tolerance of ambiguity was so good. If you want good role models, just go over to any old age home., You can hear so many good stories of endurance. Of patience of the tallest order. Learn from them. Get inspired.

Yes, there is always a better tomorrow for those who learn endurance in the journey of being patient at all times.

Enjoy all the bright moments

Get to talk to any father and mother of a girl child, who had recently completed her first performance in Bharatnatyam, a classic dance form of South India. You will realize their joy after so many hours.days, months and years of hard work. It is also hard work for the parents of the girl. They would have had to sacrifice so much for the success of their girl. This is what is called enjoying all the bright moments.

You will also have your bright moments. If you had patiently learned every bit of knowledge and skill in your company, you would have applied elsewhere and got a much better job. This is your bright moment. This is person-specific to you. However your journey of patience has given you the fruit.


Like many other behavioral variable, patience is also best learned only from real world experiences. Some theory or some book might provide clues. However, when we learn from the successful others, our learning has more meaning. For we tend to not only take them as role models, but also happily go ahead and perfect whatever we are doing.

Patience is a big virtue. When you master it, you have gone up the success ladder in this game called life.

All the very best to you.

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