In Order to Reverse a Lifetime of Bad Decisions, You Must Deploy a Lifetime of Patience

Today’s post is a hard one for me. I have to admit a flaw in myself, my training, and my mindset.

I am impatient.

Perhaps it’s my generation. I was born in the 90s – I basically never knew a world without cell phones and instant communication. I didn’t have to make it very far into my teenage years to get Netflix instant video streaming, high-speed internet, or UberEats. Everything that I have ever been around in my life has been damn near instantaneous – a meal from the microwave in less than 3 minutes, a movie downloaded directly to my TV in less than 5, or basically any product I could think of delivered to my door in less than 2 hours.

No wonder I’m impatient.

Perhaps it’s in my genes. My family has always had a desire for instant gratification, rarely sticking to any resolution, diet, or exercise program for very long. Most of my family is/was obese, opting for quick food rather than a well-balanced and cooked meal. My brother spent most of his teenage life constantly in front of a computer screen while my father binged Netflix and on-demand.

No wonder I’m impatient.

Maybe it’s just a personal flaw – after all, I’ve never been able to stick to diet, job, or exercise program for very long without getting bored and uninterested. By my estimation, I must have “made the decision” over 30 times to change and be healthier with no real long-term commitment after my first 4 or 5 workouts didn’t leave me looking like Dwayne Johnson.

No wonder I’m impatient.

But I have the choice to employ a massive amount of patience in my favor. I can either choose to quit and live the same impatient, unfulfilling life that I just walked away from to pursue a life of happiness, health, and self-love or I can continue on this path that requires a whole lot of hard work and…

You guessed it: patience.

I can tie this whole concept into past blog posts that I have made, but a revelation I’ve come to recently speaks to me far louder and more profoundly. Patience is rooted in commitment to results, that no matter how long it takes and no matter how much sweat I have to put towards a goal, I will achieve it. Patience without commitment is useless, but commitment cannot exist without passion and self-love.

This time will be different. This time, I will love myself too much to ring the bell and quit on this journey. That love will foster the patience I need to rid myself of a lifetime of bad decisions and disservices to myself.

Why Patience is, In Fact, a Virtue

After spending weeks smashing mile after mile on the treadmill, I found myself struggling at just the 1-mile mark. After 2 miles, I struggled to even walk back to my point of origin.

That smack in the face was a humbling experience that left me re-thinking whether this whole journey was for me. To be completely honest, if not for my pseudo-responsibility to this blog and my Instagram page, I would have never set foot in the gym again after a defeat like that.

But realizing that there is no turning back or quitting showed me a fundamental truth: it’s taken me a long time to dig this hole for myself, why wouldn’t it take a long time to climb out?

25 Years

When you look at it this way, patience in the face of radical change seems like an unavoidable necessity. In order to dramatically change 25 years of bad decisions and poor health, I have to be prepared to spend 25 years reversing those wrongs without wavering.

After all, I never once took a day off from being unhealthy. I was committed. I went day after day eating pizza and lying in bed or on the couch – never thinking of the effect these behaviors would have on my own body. So why, then, is it okay for me to take a day off from the commitment to be healthy? In my mind, I must be equally stringent as I was lax, equally committed as I was derelict of self-care and health.

And it is to that end that I will never quit. That fierce vengeance that I want to take upon my younger self is what drives me.

The patience will take care of itself if I only love my new commitment enough to make room for it.

I’m Kyle Inabinette, the founder of OA Designs, a branding agency that creates responsive and unique graphics for our clients. I write about all kinds of stuff.

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