Patience they say is a noble virtue. I could cite numerous true-life examples to prove this fact. In this article, we will take a closer look at a much-discussed topic of instant gratification vs delayed gratification, where we will find out for ourselves how patience brings good things to those who wait.
Examples of instant gratification
So, what exactly is instant gratification? This word denotes an immediate benefit which is often easy to get. You get instant gratification from binging on junk food or getting money from a personal loan. It comes from mindless internet surfing instead of focusing on paying bills and other internet-based jobs or whiling away your time lazing around the house, instead of getting those important jobs done.
Instant gratification is like an addiction, where you indulge in short-term pleasures, with little or no regard for the future.
Should I choose instant gratification over delayed gratification?
If you take a look at the lives of great people, you will see that they sacrificed a lot to achieve what they did. If you want to achieve something, you need to be ready to sacrifice something, which may not be easy. However, you will always experience great satisfaction in getting something for what you gave. The most fulfilling achievements are usually the ones that required the most effort.
Delayed gratification, aka “long-term planning” gives you a purpose, sets your goals and adds a meaning to your life. Surrendering to the pleasures of instant gratification is easy. But this joy will only be short-lived against long-term planning which brings good things to you on a more permanent basis.
Benefits of delayed gratification
If you do some long-term planning, you will enjoy the result of your efforts. Here are a few benefits you can expect:
- Security in financial matters for those who planned their finances well
- Better health
- A more meaningful life
- You can become more experienced in a particular field
- Better educational qualifications if you have studied hard over an extended period
- A great sense of accomplishment which boosts your self-confidence
How can I achieve delayed gratification?
To overcome the temptations that accompany instant gratification for long-term planning, ask yourself these questions:
- What do I want to accomplish?
- What are the means to reach my goals?
- Why do I want to it?
- What’s in it for me?
- What is the importance of meeting this target?
Once you have asked yourself these questions, you will probably wonder how you are going to achieve your goals. The answer comes from within because if you want to do it, no amount of obstacles will stop you. Here are a few things that will keep you on track:
Be consistent in the way you work towards your targets. Whether it is a sales target for your business, pounds to be shed in your weight-loss program or trying to excel in sports, you need to evolve a system and stick to your daily routine.
The results of long-term planning come slowly but surely. You cannot expect instant results within days. Depending on your specific goal, it can take months, even years to achieve. You need to be realistic enough to set your expectations according to set time-frames.
Imagine this situation. You have been on a strict weight-loss diet and exercise plan for a week. You have a lie-in on day-8 and then head for the refrigerator to fix a sumptuous breakfast. The catch here is that if you do it today, what’s to prevent you from doing it again tomorrow, and the next day and so on? Discipline will lead you from temptation and put you on the right track.
4. Focus on fixed goals
Once you have a definite goal and a plan in place, you need to focus on what you are trying to achieve. That state of mind will give you the power to carry on, regardless of obstacles.
5. Time management
You need to keep a tab on time allotted for particular tasks. This approach will make everything you do more interesting, especially if you can stick to the schedule which you have drawn out.
6. Reward system
Set milestones and reward yourself. After a week of following a rigorous diet and workout plan, go and treat yourself to a cheeseburger (with extra fries!). If you have crossed the $200.00 per day target in your own business, do a little shopping (with a fixed budget in mind) and buy yourself or your partner something special.
So, do you want to enjoy the fruit of long-term planning in preference to instant gratification? I think you do and now with these useful tips at hand, you will find that you can make your dreams come true. You just need to do a little bit of careful thinking about what you want out of life, now that you know how to achieve your goals.