In todays age with technology growing and society changing, people are becoming ingulfed in instant gratification. Everything is at our finger tips and we want to see instant results. Do you remember before cell phones, when you used to just sit there when you were bored. Now, there is no more sitting around doing nothing, we are constantly stimulating our brains. This is causing us to lose our patience, everything has to happen now and when it does happen instantaneous, we receive instant gratification. We need to learn to overcome instant gratification and regain our self control.
If we can regain our self control and learn how to enjoy delayed gratification, we will be able to enjoy many aspects of life better. First, when we start building our self control, we will have the will power to discipline ourselves in multiple facets of life. We may begin to eat healthier, become more active, build a better relationship with our significant others and friends, help us curb negative behaviors, and much more.
One facet of my life I know I seek instant gratification is my cell phone. I currently use the app TikTok way too much! This lead me to research phone usage and I found a recent study showing 75% of the American population is addicted to their phones. In that article they mentioned around 50% of the polled individuals said they would rather give up sex for a year than their phone for a year. If we started with our phones and set up disciplines for self control, they would turn into habits, once they turn into habits, they can become our new standard of living. If we are able to do that with one of the worlds most addicting tools, we would be able to implement these same disciplines into other facets of our life. By doing this, we can change our behavior and become more disciplined but you have to want to start in order to make a change.
The reason I want to use my phone less, is so I can spend more time with Shaun, and spend more time expanding Tutors of Life. So here are some tips I found on how to get better at delayed gratification:
- Get yourself distracted.
Do anything but your first impulse, so currently I have been trying to read my book instead of looking at my phone. If you want to start smaller, take a few breaths before you do your first impulse. I also keep my phone in a different room from me when I am at home and trying to dedicate time to Shaun, Mimi, or working.
Daydreaming helps you focus on the big picture and see your long term goals. Give your mind a break and let it wander.
- Remind yourself of your goals
By using delayed gratification, you will build up your patience and self discipline, which will help you reach your goals. For example, you may be saving money for your future house but you had a rough week of work and you want to go shopping to feel better. This is the perfect time to use delayed gratification, do not go shopping just to get a high from that recent purchase, it will give you instant gratification but you will soon regret it. Instead use your self discipline to focus on your bigger goals of buying your future home. Your dreams are worth being in slight discomfort now, to achieve them later. Have a vision board or a picture to remind yourself of your goals and dreams.
- Be persistent
The more you keep trying, the easier it will get. There will always be times when you fall into the instant gratification trap, but don’t get discouraged. Keep trying!
Hopefully these tips can help you fix some negative behaviors in your life. By July, I am planning to be less dependent on my phone for entertainment and instead allowing myself to daydream more through out my day. I have discovered that I don’t think about my future unless I am with Shaun, so I want to switch my phone usage to thinking about the future. I’ll have an update blog in July and hopefully can share more tips and tricks for you all!
Your life Tutor