Stop and Think

So recently I ran head-on into the pitfalls of the constant connectivity of modern life, and the impatience it spawns. I have homeschooled for several years now, and am constantly trying new things and buying books to learn about those new things. When my shelves start overflowing into my living space a little too insistently I put them on Amazon to find a new home. Most recently I sold my Complete Book of Foaling, as I don't plan to breed horses anymore.  And that's when the expectations of today's world hit me square on the noggin. I opened my email Tuesday night to find that the book had sold, so I packaged it up and drove into town to ship it off the next day.  I had to head down for an appointment and do some shopping, so it was a fairly long day. I got home late Wednesday night, took care of dinner, etc., and crashed. Thursday morning I grabbed my coffee, cranked up the old PC to send off the 'shipped' notice, but decided to check my email first. There were not one, not two, but three inquiries from the buyer questioning why the book hadn't been shipped yet, should she cancel her order, why is it going to take 22 days to ship... you get the picture. I replied with soothing tones and reality, and everything was better. Now, it's possible that customer-person was a frantic lady-in-waiting to a heavily pregnant mare, and was having a preparturition panic attack, which I can fully sympathize with. More likely, though, her reaction was a result of how impatient we've all become in our expectations of instant fulfillment and complete gratification. It seems any more that we get frustrated and impatient and almost panicked if we don't get an immediate call back, an immediate answer to a text, can't immediately google an answer to a question, and many people have no problem with freely (and rudely) interrupting a speaker to ask 'what does that mean?' instead of stopping to think for a minute and check their own brain for possible answers, including alternative and creative ways to solve their own problems. I also see a lot of people complaining about not being able to instantly and easily do whatever they want for a minimum price even when they don't really understand how to get what they want, whether it's their camera or their computer, the lab that is doing their work, or some other factor. Um, people? Chill. How did it make you feel the last time your boss didn't care why you were late, but only that you were late? Four car pileup fatality accident? I don't care! You should have been here! Your son barfed on your shirt as you dropped him off at daycare? I don't care! We have customers to serve! Your mother died? Big deal! We had a meeting that you didn't attend! It stunk, huh? Tell me, why would you want to do that to someone else? People matter more than stuff, so lets take some time to slow down and pass on some kindness. So next time you get all fired up and impatient and upset and worried, slow down for a minute and think of all the possiblities, don't immediately jump to the worst possible scenario and figure that all is lost. Sleep on it, if you have to. The world will become a nicer place and  we'll be happier people if we just cut ourselves and everyone else a little slack.