Dear Colleagues! This is Pharma Veterans’ Blog Post #557. Pharma Veterans welcome sharing of knowledge and wisdom by Veterans for the benefit of Community at large. Pharma Veterans Blog is published by Asrar Qureshi onWordPress, the top blog site. Please email to firstname.lastname@example.org for publishing your contributions here.
Dorie Clarke, the founder of Recognizes Experts – RExers – a community of highly accomplished, wonderful people, has published a new book in September 2021. This is her fourth book, and it is titled ‘The Long Game – How to be a long-term thinker in a short-term world’. I highly recommend it. Long-term thinking is becoming a challenge because the focus has largely shifted to short-term thinking and actions. The book therefore is need of the time.
One major reason for losing sight of long-term thinking is that patience has become a scarce commodity and the lack of it has become a major professional, economic, personal, social, and cultural problem. The loss of patience has its roots in several factors.
Patience has been consistently tested for various reasons in recent time. One major reason during the last two years has been COVID and its various implications.
First, everyone hoped that it was an epidemic like SARS, MERS, Bird Flu, and it will not disrupt the entire life across the world. Well, the hope kept on dashing again and again and is still teetering on the edge.
Then, we hoped that it will soon be controlled, and life will resume to normal soon though it had been greatly disrupted. It did not happen and is still far from happening. Countries like Pakistan have shown greater resilience than many others and we are running about as if everything is normal, though people are still dying of COVID around us. We have hardened ourselves against it and choose to ignore.
Economic pressures of varying degrees have been present since the beginning of COVID. Many people lost their incomes totally, their small businesses were closed, their jobs were retrenched, and they had no relief from anywhere. Rebuilding a closed business or getting rehired is still not easy, and difficulties continue to test the patience.
Personal pressures of two kinds played havoc with patience: one, which came following the status loss due to economic loss; two, the anxiety of isolation, claustrophobia of being stuck in a small place and the fear of becoming a victim of COVID.
Social pressures of maintaining status under all circumstances and putting up a brave face demands a lot of effort and taxes the patience.
Apart from COVID, the world in general and the situation in Pakistan particularly is a continuous source of testing patience.
I am reminded of an old Indian movie of Naseeruddin Shah titled ‘Albert Pinto ko ghussa kyun aata hai’. Shah plays the role of Albert Pinto who is an ordinary citizen, but he is conscientious and prefers to live by ethical and moral values. What he sees around him every day gradually makes him lose his patience and become a very angry person. This is where most of us are now – become Albert Pintos. We are angry with the government for its apathy, people-unfriendly actions, meaningless noise made by incompetent ministers and much more. We are angry with politicians for their unending exploitation of resources and people. We are angry with religious leaders for their divisive plans so that people keep fighting with each other. We are angry with business community for its hoarding, cartelizing, overpricing, customer- exploitation practices. We are angry with those who have more money than us and display it shamelessly. We are angry with those who have less/no money and beg from us or pester us for support. We are angry with relatives who keep competing with us. We are angry with ourselves for our helplessness in the face of everyday adversities, injustices, and excesses.
Anger is a classical display of loss of patience. Anger makes us do the exact opposite of what patience teaches us to do. Loss of patience in today’s world is causing a vicious cycle of unhappiness. We become angry, we do bad things and make others unhappy, they become angrier and do worse things to us, making us even more unhappy. The cycle continues unbroken.
This is where we are. It is not easy to go from this place to the place of patience, tolerance, and peace. But we must keep trying.
To be Continued……
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