By Pema Chodron:
Patience takes courage. It’s not an ideal state of calm. In fact, when we practice patience we will see our agitation far more clearly.
One man decided to train in practice on his morning commute.
He thought he was succeeding beautifully. He was patient when people cut in front of him. He was patient when they honked their horns. When he became anxious that the heavy traffic was going to make him late, he was able to relax with the agitated energy. He was doing great.
Then he had to stop for a woman at a crosswalk. She was walking very slowly.
The man sat there practicing patience-letting the thoughts go and connecting with the restlessness as directly as he could.
Suddenly the woman turned, kicked the car and started screaming at him.
At that point he totally lost his calm and started screaming back.
Then he remembered hearing that in practicing patience we see our own anger far more clearly. He started breathing in for the woman and for himself. Here they were-two strangers screaming at each other-and he felt the absurdity and tenderness of their situation.”
From: The Places That Scare You