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Why Is It Important to Avoid Instant Gratification? How to Do That?

By on November 25, 2015

I am yet to meet a person who does not wish to live a comfortable financial life. Yes, there are a few who don’t want to be rich but smooth sailing is on everyone’s mind. In both cases – whether you want an improvement on your current financial situation or intend to belong to the club of billionaires – saving is most important. In order to save more, you must practice delayed gratification.Easier said than done! This frequently touted phrase holds good for many of us when it comes to cultivating the practice of delayed gratification. Having a strong willpower is important to resist the temptation of having something right now in order to wait a little or longer for a bigger reward.

There are some things we are unable to put on hold. They are a must for living. For example, food, shelter and clothing. However, there are several things, consumption of which can be deferred for some or even long time so that we can save enough to enjoy greater gratification in near or remote future. Immediate gratification is often sought for smaller rewards while deferring it means there is a chance to be rewarded in a bigger way.

Never try to keep up with neighbors’ status

It is a common behavioral pattern among the consumers that they always want to follow others’ lifestyle. We get envious of our neighbors’ extravagance and try to squander money to be on the same level while allowing ourselves to forget income inequality between us.

Delayed gratification prevents us from getting into the trap of ‘show-off’. When temptation of immediate satisfaction is delayed, it helps you take more conscious decision at every step. It provides you with farsightedness. When you defer your immediate spending at present, it could well mean that you are hopeful of getting better alternatives in future.

Don’t build castle on borrowed money

I have used it at as a metaphor! Just because you have a credit card, it makes no sense to use it everywhere, especially if you are unable to clear payment before they become dues. For new generation, carrying a credit card has become a style statement and it often leads to indiscriminate use of the credit card. With no restriction on habit of impulsive purchase, it is better to leave your credit card at home.

I have seen many buying gifts and even paying restaurant bills by using their credit cards. It will invite disaster on their financial life. It’s meaningless to live a life on borrowed money.  However, I don’t want to include home in this list as it always appreciates in value. It will be treated as an asset but a gift, a costume or the likes will not have that status.

Spend on value

Sacrificing your present happiness in hope to be happier in future never means living a cheap and miserable life. What I want to say is you should invest on value. Calculate if what you are spending on right now will grow in value. If yes, even if they are pricey, an investment will bring you a good return.

Refraining from immediate satisfaction could create a rug-to-riches story for you. Why not give it a try?

Do you have any better idea to resist instant gratification?

Tina Roth is the personal finance blogger at She is a commerce graduate and loves to write about money and personal finance management.

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