The power of patience and courtesy

The power of patience and courtesy

There is something I have noticed for a while now. As society gets more fast-paced and convenient, people expect all their wishes and demands to be fulfilled quickly. We don’t want to wait more than 5 minutes for our food to be served, and queuing is usually a chore. When we step into a store, we expect to be served quickly and efficiently. We hate waiting at traffic lights. Online shopping is convenient, but it is best if our order arrives quickly either the same day or next day.

While I am also guilty of this syndrome, there are times where I miss the times where things were more leisurely, people were more friendly and willing to listen to others, and just more considerate in general. Nowadays, people seem to be in such a hurry that even when they bump into others or someone gets in their way, they will just sidestep past the other person like he/she was an obstacle, without looking back or acknowledging the other person’s presence. I’ve always wondered if we have really become so desensitised to our surroundings that we can’t even bother to look away from what we are focused on at the moment.

It seems like most people have become more self-absorbed and increasingly just focused on getting their own needs met. Is there still value in being patient, considerate towards others and not being in a big hurry to move on to the next activity?

While I would like to think so, there are times I feel that there is no point in trying to be nice when others don’t even appreciate it.

However, on the rare occasion when I meet someone who is unlike this, it reminds me of our innate humanity and how modern living may have gradually robbed us of that consciousness. While increased conveniences and technology are generally nice, we have to pay attention to how this is affecting our attention spans and behaviours. Patience and courtesy are virtues, so we should do our best to cultivate them.  

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