It’s About Time To Control Your Desires.

by Patrick Liew on August 20, 2019

It’s About Time To Control Your Desires.

One of my mentors shared with me about how his 11 year-old son wanted to have a lap top.

His son decided to save up to buy one for himself.

What was amazing to me was that his pocket money was only $2 per week.

According to his saving plan, he would only be able to achieve his goal in two years time.

Meanwhile, he thought about other ways to improve the rate of saving.

Together with his sibling, he even organised a garage sale to increase his savings.

He took upon himself to negotiate for a higher profit so that he can fulfil his goal earlier.

As I reflected upon this story, I can’t help thinking that was how many people of my generation were brought up.

Most of us grew up in poverty.

However, with affluence, my concern is that the discipline of delayed gratification may have become a lost art.

It’s easier for parents today to give in to the wants of their children.

After all, children should have whatever their friends have, right? I can think of many other reasons for satisfying them.

Sadly, while we may be able to make them happy, at least for awhile, we are not helping them to cultivate one of the most important values in character development.

Delayed gratification is also one of the means to achieve sustainable success.

Children needs to cultivate self control.

They need to learn how to say no to non essentials in their life and unnecessary pleasures.

This discipline will strengthen their foundation to achieve stronger fulfillment in life.

According to Michael Mischel of Stanford University, there is a correlation between delayed gratification and long term success.

He found that children who exercised more self-control in fulfilling their wants became more positive, self-motivated, and resilient in achieving their goals.

As a result, they became more successful in life.

In an “instant fixes” society, it’s hard to practice delayed gratification.

Most people are looking for easy ways, short cuts, get-rich-quick schemes, and on-demand pleasures.

Delayed gratification requires self-control, discipline and perseverance. These are also traits that are common in many successful people.

When I studied successful people, I found that they are masters in controlling their urges for immediate gratification.

And they are committed to developing this skill because they know that success requires self-mastery, determination, and hard work.

They do it through self-restraint, training, and constant practice.

Can you understand why they cannot but succeed in life?

Learning the skill of delayed gratification can also offer many other benefits.

For every cent that you save and you invest the cent wisely, over time, it will add up to a lot of money.

Multiply that by many more cents you will have in your lifetime and it will add up to a substantial saving that can be used to do many wonderful things for the people around you.

Delayed gratification can also help you to live a simple life.

Living simply is an important key to achieving happiness.

Let me illustrate.

Years ago, I had a diamond-studded Rolex watch.

One day after a swim at the club, I showered and left my watch in the soap box.

After combing my hair outside the toilet, I trurned around.

Guess what? My watch was give.

That made me unhappy for a while.

Another time, I lost a pair of designer’s leather boots that meant a lot to me.

It left me upset for a period of time.

I realized that if I did not have these belongings and have become attached to them, I would be a happier person.

I would be able to better focused on more meaningful and fulfilling pursuits.

Too often, we have over-complicated our lives.

We live by things that did not add real and sustainable values to anybody and sometimes, including ourselves.

We bought into the falsehood perpetuated by advertisements in a materialistic world.

All kinds of well-oiled tricks and traps are used to lure us to own more and more stuffs with “cash or credit card.”

We end up pursuing and having stuffs that give us a temporary sense of happiness.

After awhile, it oftentimes leave us feeling empty inside because they do not bring true fulfillment to our lives.

To make matters worse, they can make us vain, greedy and discontented.

We will not be any wiser or better when we accumulate more and more possessions and having more and more toys around us.

We came with nothing and will leave with nothing, why do we need more stuffs?

When I decided to live a simple life, I gave away many expensive belongings to my friends.

It gave me a lot of happiness when people are touched by my gifts.

I have learned to spend less money, buy less things, and give more of myself to what really matters.

Devote myself to serving our Creator, my family, my company, my friends, and our planet.

By living simply, I can achieve better results for them.

When I live a simple life (I don’t even have a watch) and have less baggages to carry, I can run better, easier and faster in life. And feel happier too.

In conclusion, please remember that spending money is the most expensive way to live your life. Lol!

Learn to say no and cut down on unnecessary expenses.

Appreciate the value and discipline of delayed gratification and you and your children will be on the way to achieving sustainable happiness and success.


I hope this message will find a place in your heart.

By the way, I have also recorded other reflections.

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