Yes it is! At least I think so.
Delayed gratification denotes a person’s ability to wait in order to obtain something that he or she wants.
Sociologically, this is looked at as a good personality trait in humans. This trait is in stark contrast to instant gratification, which as the name suggest is the impulse to have whatever you desire immediately. I can just hear some say, “why is it not a good thing to get what you want right away. I mean what’s the point of waiting to get it if you gonna get it anyway?” There have been a few experiments out there most notably the Stanford Marshmallow Experiment (1972). This study was done on four year old children. They were given one marshmallow and told if they did not eat it, but waited 20 minutes they would get another marshmallow. As you can imagine, some waited and some didn’t eat it and some ate it right away. Furthermore, the university researchers went a step further and followed these children developmentally from childhood into adolescence and found that those who delayed gratification were psychologically better adjusted, more dependable and achieved significantly higher test scores on collegiate Scholastic Aptitude Tests. See, it is not about whether or not you get to eventually have the item, it is about can you wait till circumstances allow you to get it. If I translate this to other real life situations it is basically learning how to wait, take your time amd evaluate the situation so as to make a logical decision on whether you will acquire it, IF you still choose to acquire it. Our conditioning is to immediately WANT something. Just because you want it does not mean that you NEED it. Delayed gratification is a psychological awareness. It is the answer to the well known immediate gratification that in my opinion speaks directly to our ego. We want what we want and we want it now, because we deserve it dog gone it!!! No where in that reasoning is it calculated whether we need it, will it benefit us positively, or will we truly get ahead or be pleased with a measure of true satisfaction if we have it. Delayed gratification establishes a culture in which we can ask those questions of our self, therefore putting us in better control of our lives, loves and careers.
The baby boomer generation and generations before practices delayed gratification and passed it on to their children, even though they may not have known it by that name. I remember my parents telling me that it very, very important to work for something in order to earn it. My father especially, told us that whilst we are working to earn the thing we want, we are giving ourselves a great lesson on whether we really want it, and if we do, how much more precious it will be to us if we invest sweat for it. I have Caribbean parentage and they are HUGE on the term “sweating for what you want.”
Today we are failing ourselves and our children by not continuing this lesson. We have become an nation who ever increasingly want more and want it now. If you can take some time to DESIGN your life, include this very worthwhile trait and try delaying some of your gratifications. Apply it to all areas of your life. You will find that it may be the key to you losing that weight, getting that great relationship, and making that huge impact in the business world. Put in your sweat equity and calculate the return to see if it is really what you want. We must stop feeding our lives with empty instant gratification choices, which after we have acquired them we are no more happier, satisfied, fulfilled or emotionally sound than before. Instead, much like empty calories, we are now bloated with disillusion and absolute regret!!!