Think about it, when you decide you want to have a baby the stork doesn’t exactly drop the baby on our front door step! For many of us it takes a ton of practice (that’s the PC term for it anyhow). For some of us it takes us on a roller coaster ride of ups and downs, lots of anticipation, pregnancy tests, miscarriages, disappointments, heartache. It takes time to have a baby! In fact, it takes 10 months or 438,291 minutes for that baby to grow and develop and then enter our world and well…change everything. For me, it took 3 years, 1095 days, 1,577,847 minutes, multiple miscarriages, an ectopic pregnancy, infertility treatments, a c-section and an adoption. The end result was priceless. Children who are healthy, strong and beautiful in my humble opinion of course!
Hungry for a cheeseburger? Drive through. You hop in your car (or chances are you are already in your car when the craving strikes, and you tell yourself that you want it (heck, need it) now. You can literally choose among MANY different options and all pretty much deliver an immediate cheeseburger. McDonalds, Wendy’s, Burger King, Smash Burger, you name it. Crave a cheeseburger and in about 3-4 minutes you can have one.
In business, we often set these HUGE goals for ourselves. For me, my first goal upon starting my business was to hit a benchmark for a fast start, which rewarded me with a gift from our corporate team valued at about $800-1,000. I hit it. Pretty immediate gratification if you ask me. My next goal was to hit a promotion within the company that would land me in the top 2% of the company. I hit that within 6 months of starting my business which was awesome! I have continued to set goals and have been rewarded my efforts for Leading the Way within my company. I get pretty darn excited about coffee mugs, a Yeti cooler, Kate Spade handbags, a Nordstrom shopping extravaganza with a personal shopper, all expense paid trips and the like. My next promotion advancement goal took me awhile to achieve…many years, and I absolutely desired the immediate gratification, but it was definitely delayed. I want it now! (Channel the voice of little girl from Willy Wonka yelling out her desires!) I mean, who doesn’t want it all, and want it right away? This year, I have another huge goal I’ve set to double my team’s growth and income this year.
How do I stay focused in the midst of this delayed gratification?
- Get scrappy. I am scrappy. What I mean by that is I won’t give up without a fight…not in the physical sense but in the mental sense. It’s what Angela Duckworth calls GRIT. She’s got a Grit Scale you can check out here.
- Focus on the little wins along the way. Celebrate with a Starbucks, or a great workout at the local YMCA or a break to watch some trashy TV or indulge in a guilty pleasure when you accomplish something. Did a new customer join you? Did you share something with a team member that was encouraging? Did a new business partner decide to link arms with you? Celebrate! You deserve it and it’s a lot more fun to have a little treat along the way.
- Read. Read great books that help set your mind on gratitude, discipline or that lift you up. I’m reading Rachel Hollis’s “Girl, Wash Your Face” now for some inspiration!
- Stay laser focused on what you want in the end and think about why you want it and how you will get after it.
- Find ways to get immediate gratification…need something sweet for that craving? Enjoy a piece of dark chocolate. Have a glass of wine while you wait for the champagne. The truth is the champagne all tastes the same when you celebrate that success.
What are your strategies when you face delayed gratification? I’d love to hear from you!