What it means to Delay Gratification

Today I want to throw more light on a topic I find it vital to our success in life. Since the day I made a decision to study wealthy and successful people so I can learn from and tap from them, one statement they kept telling me whether in books, at seminars or in-person is to delay gratification.

What is delay gratification?
What does it mean to delay gratification?

But before that, let look at gratification or instant gratification.

Instant gratification is a habit where you forgo short-term pain, and instead, indulge in fleeting pleasures that ultimately result in long-term pain. In other words, you find reasons ( excuses ) not to do something because of the pain it creates at the moment even though you know that this action is necessary to help you attain your long-term goals and objectives.

Instant gratification often manifests as procrastination. It’s a form of self-sabotage where you get caught up indulging in the temptations of life at the cost of your long-term goals.

It’s where the pleasures of the moment just seem so much more enticing than the temporary pain you’ll experience while in the pursuit of your goals.

Now to the main topic; What it Means to Delay Gratification

Delayed gratification is a habit where you forgo short-term pleasure (comfort) in order to gain significant long-term pleasure and future rewards. In other words, you ward off short-term temptations that might distract you from your long-term goals and instead focus on what you need to do to achieve your desired long-term outcomes.

This might, of course, result in short-term pain and suffering. However, this pain comes with the realization that it’s only temporary. It’s therefore, necessary as it helps you get to your ultimate destination.

Getting into the habit of delaying gratification gives you more control over your life, decisions, and actions. Furthermore, it helps you value and appreciates hard work and effort. Yes, things are tough right now, but the pain you experience is a necessary part of the process to help you achieve your long-term goals.

The act of delaying gratification helps to strengthen your mind and shape your character. It builds self-control and willpower, reinforces self-discipline, and teaches you about the value of patience. It’s the one habit that determines how successful you will become and how much you will ultimately achieve.

In your financial life, learn to plan for the future. Delaying gratification is one thing that will help you save and invest towards the future. Let your current age take care of your old age. Delay gratification today!

By; Peter Kwadwo Asare Nyarko
Financial Educator, Author, Entrepreneur. Co-founder, Center for Financial Literacy Education, Africa (cfleafrica.org)

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