Character Chats

Who Shows Us Patience?

Who shows us patience?

Here at True Balance Karate in Downers Grove, Illinois, we have a social emotional learning program called True Character. I’m Master H, the owner and chief instructor here at the studio, and I have two master’s degrees in education. And we’ve developed this curriculum to best meet the needs of our youngest students who are three or four, and our oldest student who is 85.

And this month, we have been talking about patience. We started off the month last week with defining what it looked like, waiting without getting upset. We needed to practice our patience because literally everything we do on a day-to-day basis takes some patience in some way, shape or form. And today, we’re talking about who actually demonstrates that patience, who shows us patience on a day-to-day basis. And again, since patience is something that we have to practice all the time, everyone is demonstrating our patience.

Everyone demonstrates patience and it looks different compared to who it might be. So for my younger students, they’re going to recognize that their parents demonstrate patience with them as they’re teaching them how to tie their shoe or do homework with them or things like that. Siblings demonstrate patience. They show us patience all the time when they want to sit down and play a game together, work through something, going outside, playing at the park, those kinds of things. All of that would be siblings demonstrating patience. Grandparents, aunts, uncles, all of our family shows us patience and it looks different depending on who it is in front of us.

And then our students, our younger kids, are also going to recognize that their teachers are going to be people that show them patience. How they stand in front of the classroom to teach the lesson, how they kneel down next to their desk to work through the problem that they weren’t understanding, how they take moments to really listen and hear what’s going on. Those take some patience as well.

And then we talk about the fact that there are other people in the world who show patience with us all the time. For us as adults, it’s recognizing the fact that, and for the kids too, absolutely. It’s recognizing for the fact that the grocery store cashier is practicing patience as we’re loading up our groceries, and maybe you’re the last customer in their line and they’re like, “Okay, I turned the light off and now I’m going to practice my patience and take care of this one more thing.” Maybe they’ve been working through something themselves and they’re practicing their patience and they’re showing us patience as they’re going along. We all have good days, we all have bad days, and that’s how that goes.

Maybe another idea would be where we’re looking for something in the store and we ask for help, and it’s so very obviously right in front of us, and we’re getting the help that we need, which means we ask for help. Great on us. We’re advocating for what we need. That person in the store is helping us, patiently showing us where it is, all of that. Doctor’s office, dentist’s office, librarians, police officers, firemen, bankers, you name the job, they are demonstrating their patience towards us all the time.

So when we’re thinking about how we as people need to practice our patience with each other and ourselves, we need to remember that all of those people that are within our orbit that we see every day, that we interact with every day, those people also show us patience. So it’s really one of those things that is everywhere. And a little while back, we talked about kindness and how you needed to sprinkle it like glitter. But patience is that same way. We are all practicing it. We are all going through our day. We are all running into moments where we might feel stressed or rushed or impatient, and running through moments where we can take a deep breath and breathe and offer that smile and practice that patience.

So if we take a moment and remember who shows us patience, it’s everybody. Everybody around us is showing us patience, no matter how old we are, no matter how young we are, and no matter how they are age-wise, we’re all showing each other patience.

So, continue to practice your patience and I will see you on the mat!


True Balance Karate was founded in 2012 by Master Sue and Paul Helsdon.

We offer kids karate lessons for pre-school children ages 3-6 and elementary age kids ages 7 and up. These lessons are designed to develop the critical building blocks kids need — specialized for their age group — for school excellence and later success in life.

Our adult martial arts training is a complete adult fitness and conditioning program for adults who want to lose weight, get (and stay) in shape, or learn self-defense in a supportive environment.

Instructors can answer questions or be contacted 24 hours of the day, 7 days a week at 630-663-2000. You can also contact us here. True Balance Karate is at 406 Ogden Ave Downers Grove Illinois, 60515 (next to CVS) Check out our Facebook!