1. Arriving early
- In what kinds of situations should people always arrive early?
I suppose things like appointments and meetings are the most obvious; whether it’s a doctor’s appointment or whatever, or a business meeting, where other people have organized their time according to a schedule – you should respect the time of others and arrive early, or at least on time.
Then there are certain other situations such as arriving at the airport for an international flight, when you are required to arrive earlier than the departure time of the flight to allow time for everyone to check in and board without any problems.
It’s always better to arrive early than late when you’re meeting others or when others are depending on your arrival, such as when you’re traveling. Being late just causes problems for everyone involved.
- In your country, how important it is to arrive early?
We’re typically punctual, it’s not always necessary to arrive really early for every meeting or appointment, but people expect you to be there at the time that was arranged, or at least within a few minutes of the time. Any later and people typically begin to get frustrated or lose their patience.
Obviously, if it’s a really important appointment, such as a job interview or something like that, then you’re expected to arrive before the time designated, to help keep the process moving along smoothly. It also helps make a good first impression if you’re punctual, it shows that you’re serious about getting the job, and can manage your time.
It depends on the exact situation as to how important it is to arrive early. The more important the event, or situation, typically the more important it is to arrive at the right time, or early, to avoid any potential problems.
- How can modern technology help people to arrive early?
I’m not sure exactly, but I guess you could say that time management apps and GPS maps might help someone organize their time and find their way to a certain place easier than before.
But at the end of the day, people used to use diaries and paper-based planners, and maps, to organize their days, and arrive at places on time.
The most important thing is to plan your time, know where you’re going and how long it will take you to arrive there. That can all be done without technology – but technology just makes it easier.
However, even with all the apps and technology available today, if you can’t wake up on time, or organize your time well, you’ll still arrive late sometimes – what’s important is your basic time management skills.
2. Being patient
- What kinds of jobs require the most patience?
The ones that spring to mind are teachers, scientists, and people who have to work with other people, be it as therapists or simply in customer service, or dealing with the public.
Teachers are generally very patient because the learning process, especially for children, can be complex, and they need to show a lot of patience and support if children are having difficulties.
Scientists might have to work for a long time before they can obtain any positive results in their research or experiments, and sometimes they may need to wait patiently for years before seeing any conclusive results.
As for people who work with other people, there are lots of jobs which require patience, and some more than others. For example, psychologists, might spend a lot of time patiently listening to people before being able to make any positive progress with their patients. And customer service representatives that have to deal with hundreds of people every day need a lot of patience, because usually when people have a problem, or a complaint, they aren’t patient and want a solution immediately.
In such situations, it’s important that people dealing with other people can be extremely patient to help resolve a situation or problem without any acrimony or making the situation worse because they themselves become impatient.
- Is it always better to be patient in work (or when studying)?
No, not always – sometimes it’s better to push things along. Obviously, a lot depends on the particular situation. Patience is important if whatever it is you’re doing shouldn’t be rushed, for example, a very complex operation or process which needs a lot of concentration.
Other times, it’s simply better to do things as quickly as possible, as long as they can be done well, and safely, and still obtain the best results.
The most important factor which determines how patient you can be is probably time – if you have a lot of time to do something, you can probably afford to be patient, but if you’re under pressure to get something done, then you probably won’t be able to be as patient as you might like under ideal circumstances, and might have to just get the task, or whatever, done in a satisfactory manner.
- Do you agree or disagree that older people are more patient? Why do you think that is the case?
In general, I would say yes, they are. I believe it’s because nowadays, we’ve become accustomed to having so much of our life, and information, at our fingertips, literally, on mobile, and the general pace of life is faster today.
My parents’ generation had a more organized life, in the sense that work and private life were quite separate, you went to work, and then went home and it was rare that the two interacted.
But now, for many people, work is integrated into other aspects of life, so, for example, you can be with your family and be doing something like shopping for groceries, while at the same time you’re dealing with a client on your mobile, or sending an email, or reserving a flight or hotel, or something like that.
Older people had more time to do almost everything, people today, especially younger people, are pushed to do more and more each day, all the time, and are therefore generally more impatient about getting things done. We expect everything to be done, or be available instantaneously, thanks to technology.