Delaying Immediate Gratification

One of the hardest things to do for most people is delaying their immediate gratification. We live in a society where we want everything and we want it now, without much consideration to its future impact.

The addiction of our times is digital connection, instant gratification, and the cheap adrenalin high of constant busyness.

Speed, distraction, and instant gratification are the enemies of nearly everything that matters most in our lives. Creating long-term value — for ourselves and for others — requires more authentic connection, reflection, and the courage to delay immediate gratification. That’s wisdom in action.

Delayed gratification can be thought of as instant gratification saved for a later usage.  When our gratification is delayed, we are indirectly saying that we can handle the lack of a reward now, and that we know the benefits of reserving one for later on.

It is wise to look at any source of instant gratification, in order to assess the helpfulness that it actually provides. We will find, time and time again, that sources of quick rewards and fast results are not there to benefit us, and that few, if any, will actually result in our long-term growth.

The items to avoid are the ones that smell like instant gratification from a distance away.  Selling instantly gratifying items is on the easy side of the selling scale, while usage of instantly gratifying items is low on the long-term value scale.

Accepting instant gratification is associated with people that is more likely to be indecisive, stubborn, impulsive, overwhelmed by stress, prone to jealousy and envy, poorer students, and have a lower self-image.

On the other hand, delayed gratification is related to people being assertive, self-reliant, trustworthy, dependable, eager to learn, able to cope with frustration, and more competent academically.

Summing-up: A small change in our current average level of gratification usage will impact a multitude of aspects in our character. Creating value in our lives and work requires the courage to delay immediate gratification.

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