How often has the desire for instant gratification led you to a hardship?
You might not be readily able to answer this one…or you might not be sure what I mean. Since we tend to look at things in isolation as they occur, we might not look back to see the genesis of something.
In effective problem-solving, you figure out the true problem, and then you dedicate all your focus and resources to solving it. Because of the busy nature of life, we might not then do the critical step of going back and debriefing how it happened in the first place (because we are on to the next issue).
I believe that a major factor in our country’s challenges, and the overriding factor in the individual’s challenges can be traced to the desire to have instant gratification.
The fixation on having it NOW is at the root of health problems, debt problems, and wasted resources and dreams. In some ways I have been blessed in this area because I have traditionally been a slow starter, and I have had very little handed to me or that came easily.
This doesn’t keep me from WANTING what I want NOW…but it tempers it in that I know things that matter and that are worthwhile take time, patience, and consistent effort.
This gives me some immunity to the marketers and hypers in the world who push the quick fixes in life. The quick fix usually leads to a more serious longer term problem…because either it doesn’t work at all (so now your issue is even worse because more time has passed and more resources have been expended) or it works in the short term, but since the root issue was never actually addressed, the true problem will reappear later and it will be a bigger monster. Sort of like an infection that becomes resistant to the antibiotics.
The bigger problem is the loss of hope or the jaded perspective that creeps in after the quick fix search has backfired multiple times. It is sad to me that so many people lose sight of how abundant our world is, how joyful life can be, how good they can live, and how far they can personally go, if they will just temper the desire for instant gratification and exercise diligence in their pursuits, and patience with the process of change and success in life.
It’s important to have fun. Fun is a form of instant gratification…but its the good kind. It’s only a problem if you are avoiding what you should and could do, and using the fun as the means.
Think about what you want your life to look like in these areas: health and fitness, relationships, careere/business success. Then set a plan to accomplish sustainable, long term success in each area and stick to it. When someone tries to side track you with the latest and greatest gimmick…just say “No thank you.”