Instant gratification is a lot more than lack of discipline.
Instant gratification comes from the microwave thinking that there is a quick fix solution for everything, a pill solution, for every problem. It comes from the broken thinking that there is a quick fix for a complex problem. Get rid off your stress in 10 seconds!
Just look at the popularity of lotteries and casinos! Why do we buy lottery tickets? Research shows that 95% of lottery winners at worse off 10 years later than prior to winning the lottery. Why is that? The simple truth is that the winners do not have the proper thinking and understanding of money to go along with a large sum of money.
Albert Einstein wisely said that in order to solve problems we need a different level of thinking than when we created the problem. The inability to delay gratification causes enormous loss of energy and money and ultimately failures in every aspect of our lives. It also causes a lot of pain and consumption of pills and drugs without solving the underlying problems. We in fact become train wrecks. You know what I am talking about.
Let’s take a look at what made us such instant gratification seekers, quick fix junkies:
1. Insatiable desire for quick fixes, from dieting to relationships due to our inability to see that work ethic, behind long term thinking, is the key for every long term, sustained solution.
2. Hunger for money and power. Easy credit and low cost of technology has compounded the problem. We want it and we want it now mentality. Imagine mortgaging the future for a quick fix.
3. Inability to learn from the past. Failing to learn from history is planning to fail. Expansion of faulty, broken thinking at a fast and ferocious pace.
4. Increase of exploiting and decrease in earning and deserving. Increase of welfare and entitlements. Increase in size and centralization of governments. Popularization of the idols of mediocrity at the expense of education and sacrifice.
5. Lack of reflection time from busyness without purpose and meaning.
6. Desire to express the me and me, microwave thinking. Getting something for nothing. No wonder Facebook is so popular!
7. The dumbing down and the lowering of standards in our society; the focus more on rights than responsibilities and the increase of pessimism, negativity, and cynicism.
Never accept an excuse as a reason for not delaying gratification and truly earning what your heart desires. There is an enormous opportunity to create wealth by moving from instant to delayed gratification. Long term thinking and strong work ethic is required!
Be blessed and be a blessing to others!
Carlos Fontana, President of Phalanx
Co-author of the book Follow to Lead (The 7 Principles to Being a Great Follower)
Author of the book PRICELESS (Sixty-Six Simple Stories of Reflection, Love, and Legacy)