ISSUE NO.9 | SEPTEMBER 2016
It's Worth The Wait
The ability to discipline yourself to delay gratification in the short term in order to enjoy greater rewards in the long term, is the indispensable prerequisite for success.
The Social Network
As I sit down to write, my iPhone sits next to me, glaring back with that blank-screen stare. I switch it to vibrate mode...then I get ballsy enough to swipe up and click the crescent moon "Do Not Disturb" icon. It's time to write. Instantly, I remember that I've got someone swinging by the house shortly, grab my phone, and de-select the moon. As soon as I do, an Instagram notification pops up, and I'm transported into a virtually inescapable world. Hmm...I would really like to post a new photo. It'll only take a minute. Then, all of a sudden I get a text, and my guests are on their way. Meanwhile, a Facebook Messenger notification rattles my phone, and a friend has a question about making a first-time smoothie!
I love being connected. Exchanging thoughts, ideas, experiences, knowledge, and beliefs with anyone anywhere at anytime has created so much opportunity. Smartphones and technology conveniently bring us all closer together, but they can also bring us further from accomplishing our goals. The number of "Likes" we get on Facebook or Instagram, the immediate responses from Siri to our every question, texting the hubs to grab avocados from the store on the way home--there is nothing that our phones can't deliver to us in the blink of an eye.
Instant gratification can come in many forms other than technology. Fast food is a prime example. Why spend 2 hours cooking in the kitchen when we can simply drive through McDonald's?! But then when our waistlines begin to grow, we want the quick-fix, weight-loss solution. Miracle pills, 7-day diets, liposuction. Join a gym? Get outta town!
We sell ourselves short by taking shortcuts.
I like to think of a building. Peering up at all of the skyscrapers in New York City always makes me wonder how they stand so tall and immovable. A solid foundation is key! If an impatient builder were to ignore the blueprints and skip digging down into the earth to pour a solid foundation, not only would the building crumble, it would never be able to reach the unfathomable height in store for it!
The instant gratification phenomenon has caused our focus to shift from long-term to short-term. Instead of having the attention span to sit through a 3-hour movie, it's now become a 3-minute YouTube video! I know we're all told in our sweaty, hot yoga classes to be present, and I totally get it! In this situation, however, we want to zoom out and look at the bigger picture--the future.
Close your eyes for a minute (don't worry, just one minute, not 5)! Picture yourself where you want to be five, maybe ten years from now. What will it take to get you there? Chances are, you'll have to set some lofty goals that might seem unreachable. I think that's a good thing! We all have hopes and dreams for where we ultimately want to be, and in order to get there, it takes grit and determination! If you want to write a book, it's got to be longer than updating your Twitter status. If you want to develop a sustainable, healthy lifestyle, it's going to take more than a 7-day meal plan.
Looking into the future isn't always such a bad thing. If we look forward to where we want to be, we can begin to work backwards with smaller, actionable steps and attainable goals to get us there.
Have Faith Not Fear
It may appear that instant gratification is driven by laziness, but much of the time the underlying cause is fear. We shy away from challenging situations. We fear that if we go home after work and cook a nutritious meal, we won't have time to do other things. We fear that joining a gym will cost too much money and will be hard work. We feel unsure and inadequate so we seek praise and feedback from others via social media.
Delayed gratification takes faith!
Think back to the last difficult project your completed and how great you felt. Short-sightedness gives us an immediate, but extremely short-lived feeling of satisfaction. Generally, the more time and effort put into something, the greater the sense of satisfaction and the longer-lived it will be! When I think about graduating college, I still feel an overwhelming sense of pride, and probably always will! So begin by figuring out what your ultimate goal is, and create a smaller goal to get yourself there. Set the smartphone aside, put on some chill music, and get to work! When you accomplish one important task, remember the feeling that you get when moving onto the next. Keep pressing forward, not always looking for the easiest route, but the most effective.
In order to build a solid foundation in your life, you've got to begin by digging down before you begin to build up. It may seem counterproductive, but have faith; it will take you further in the long-run!
Skip the shortcut. Opt for the scenic route!
Slow + Steady Wins The Race
The best thing about being a health and lifestyle coach is getting to peer into the future and look at what's possible! Need a hand setting and achieving your goals?
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