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In A Culture Of Instant Results, Let Us Be More Patient

03/08/2017 12:45 BST | Updated 03/08/2017 12:45 BST

What is left there in the world today that we can't get instantly? From instant coffee to instant everything! Our instincts are to seize the reward at hand, and resisting that disposition can be difficult. Instant gratification may seem like a good idea at the moment, however, it will not take you to the place you want to be in life. Learn to let go of those desires and focus on the big picture. In addition, when you want things instantly, even if you get them, you're likely to lose them as quickly.

Heard of the saying 'slow and steady wins the race'? Yes, the famous tale of the turtle and the hare nicely illustrates the principle of patience coupled with persistence, where the speed of the hare is beaten in the end for the patience and persistence of the turtle.

Patience and perseverance, tolerance and forbearance are common traits of the world's most successful people. Patience, specifically, is that one human trait which is the foundation of true success.

Regarding this Hafez Shirazi, a famous Persian poet says:

"Patience and success are friends of each other. Success comes as a result of patience."

Patience together with persistence intercede in almost all aspects of our lives. From activities such as making a career, building relationships, starting a business to grow and obtain a position on the market, developing a special skill, learning a new language, raising children, losing weight, establishing a regular exercise routine, to eliminating negative habits. All these actions necessitate patience attached to persistence; else, it is unable to make or obtain anything of value. Parents will especially agree here with me, for they know exactly what I talking about! (High-five).

Unfortunately there are many people who are patient but do not insist on achieving something long enough to get it, but leave aside their goals and dreams because they see that there is a mandatory long-term effort, and then they fit in a mental comfort zone settling for what they are accustomed to. This is the sort of category we all have fallen into somewhere in our lives, admit it or not.

Improvements in technology or the IoT specifically, over the last decade or so has made patience almost unnecessary today. Although, instant gratification is the result of high-end technology that provides us with a much easier lifestyle, there's a darker side to it; the longitudinal psychology study done by Dr. Walter Mischel between 1960s to 1970s. Dr. Mischel first conducted an experiment with children to see how long they would willingly wait to receive a treat. The children were told that they could receive a treat at that moment, or they could wait 15 minutes to have their treat doubled. The results of this study showed that less than one third of the children were able to wait to receive a greater reward.

Dr. Mischel studied these same students 20 years later and found that those who were patient enough to wait 15 minutes doubling their treat were more intelligent, had more self-control, and better abilities associated with concentration Thus, it appears that delayed gratification contributes to a healthier lifestyle and overall well-being.

"The need for instant gratification is not new, but our expectation of 'instant' has become faster, and as a result, our patience is thinner,"
said Narayan Janaki Raman, an assistant marketing professor at the University of Texas, Arlington.

So challenge yourself from today. Break free from the habit of getting instant results/gratification. By stepping away from that urge to take the easy route, you will become stronger and make better, more conscious decisions. This will in turn make you value and cherish what you have gained. Instant gratification may be the reason for your unhappiness and long-term dissatisfaction as you continuously forgo significant long-term benefits for insignificant short-term pleasures that come in the form of temptations!