We're told from a very early age that patience is a virtue. However, very few of us are ever really shown or taught how to be patient. Patience is not something we have; it is something we consciously do. Patience is like any other hard-earned discipline: The more we practice it, the more patient we become.

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To be successful, we need patience when it comes to employee relations, business negotiations and communications, as well as achievement of the strategic goals we've set. Further, we have to remain calm amid the big and small twists and turns that come with life. It is only through being patient that we can truly learn from the curveballs which get thrown in our path.

Here are eight benefits of practicing patience:

1. Positive rewards

Impatience is a habit, and so is patience. When we lack patience, we are unable to delay gratification for more than the moment, which fills us with frustration. Frustration is the emotional energy that drives “quitting.” When we're impatient, we're unable to work toward our business goals in a dedicated fashion. We start to quit in order to start again, and we run this pattern over and over.

Changing a habit requires strong motivation. We have to be guaranteed rewards that will come from adopting a more mature response. Patience can reward us with positive recognition, greater sales, increased customer satisfaction, stronger profits or a promotion we seek. Whatever the measure of realization looks like, surely it is the sum total of patience plus hard work.

2. Smart decision-making

When it comes to making good decisions, patience is your most formidable resource. Many people in business are looking for an edge over their competition and ways to improve their performance. If this is you, don't be disillusioned enough to believe that sharp business plans and the best talent around are a substitute for the virtues needed to guide and direct a business in the right direction.

Patience is one of those virtues. When we are patient, we stay out of the negative stories that can cloud our judgment. “What-iffing” ourselves with disastrous outcomes is typically human, but also completely destructive to our capacity to make sound decisions. When we are patient, we have the mindfulness to stop and focus on the present moment. By being in the moment, we are able to make wise choices that take the big and small picture into account.

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3. Builds reputation

Successful businesspeople set themselves apart from the rest of the pack by mastering the skill sets which lead to success. Patience gives us grit. It gifts us the ability to work steadily toward our goals. And when we reach our goals consistently, we build our reputation. Great reputations are developed through persevering, not giving up.

It is when we persist, despite the odds, that we achieve the desired levels of success we seek. Any endeavor that could potentially become a great success requires us to dedicate ourselves to a long, hard effort. This is only a possibility when we are patient with our progress, no matter how fast or slow it goes. So, strive to be the last businessperson/company standing, and others will see you as accountable, dependable and their first choice for someone to conduct business with.

4. Self-possession

Patience puts us in direct control of ourselves. And there is no more powerful an aid to success then self-possession. When we are patient, we give ourselves time to choose how to respond to a given event, rather than get emotionally hijacked by our emotions. It allows us to stay gathered no matter what is happening. With self-management we build trust in our capacity to deal with whatever comes our way.

A lack of success or progress can almost always be boiled down to a lack of patience. The most basic reason for impatience is a lack of control. When we lack control, we lack understanding and insight. When we lack understanding and insight, we lack the ability to plan, communicate and set realistic expectations. But when we claim control over these issues, we get to bask in the rewards patience can deliver.

5. Tolerance

Patience increases our threshold of tolerance. It gives us the foresight to expect obstacles on our path and to deal with them diplomatically. When we expect challenges, we respond with more courage, strength and optimism. We understand that emotional discomfort is a part of any obstacle and accept that life’s curveballs are a natural part of the business cycle; therefore, we don’t add any additional suffering, bitterness or revenge to the mix. Instead, we roll up our sleeves and do the work we need to do.

The more easily we roll with the punches and learn to tolerate the quirks of other human beings and the unpredictable ebb and flow of the cycles of success, the less stress we experience and the more resilient we become.

6. Hope

Patience brings hope. It brings a continued renewal of belief in our desired goals and in the heights we are striving to achieve. When we are hopeful, we have a natural resilience and willingness to keep trying because we trust in the possibility of a good outcome.

As we succeed, slowly but surely we come to understand that delay doesn’t equal denial.

7. Positive team culture

Being patient gives way to remarkable results. The main focus and priority of any businessperson, leader or company should be the attitude or emotional tone of its culture. If the culture of our business is right, all of the other elements required for success, such as great customer service, will just happen. Developing a culture of engagement can be realized only through a patient devotion to what you are trying to achieve.

Being patient, then, increases our chances of achieving what we want. When we are patient, we are better people, managers and business leaders. With patience we treat other people with a sense of decency, which in turn increases the possibility they will respond in kind.

8. Excellence

Patience develops excellence. Talent is long-earned patience. At the core of every true success is an awareness of the difficulties inherent in any achievement and the confidence that by persisting and being patient, something worthwhile will be realized. In this way, genius is nothing but a greater propensity for patience.

We fulfill our potential with patience. Through patience we are able to offer our distinctive mark of excellence to the world. This is no small thing, for the world desperately needs the best of what each of us has to offer.

Building a brand and reputation takes time. We cannot plant a seed and expect it to flower overnight. Success always begins with patience and the commitment to put in the due diligence necessary for excellence.

Yet patience is not easy to come by. Be the type of businessperson who is making sound decisions based upon solid values rather than impulsive reactions. Patience is the one virtue that serves us as businesspeople well. Patience takes time and conscious effort to master, but impatience can lead to our demise. As Thomas Edison said, “Many of life’s failures are people who did not realize how close they were to success when they gave up.”

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