Day 2 – Delayed Gratification

Having to wait for something makes it ever more enticing.

I’ll start with the “textbook” analysis of Delayed Gratification:

Pleasure is central to our survival. We need things like food, water, and sexin order to survive and pass our genetic material on to the next generation. However, as we get older and mature, we must learn to tolerate the discomfort of delayed gratification if we have a greater purpose or goal in mind. Unlike infants and young children, adults are characterized by their ability to delay gratification and tolerate hard work, discipline, and occasional unpleasantness in order to fulfill responsibilities and achieve goals. Mature adults don’t expect others to meet their needs. They understand and accept that they won’t always be gratified. My second post title for this week is apropos. I was sick again this weekend and didn’t get to writing as much as I wanted to. Feeling under the weather even with a head cold doesn’t bode well for progress in the goals we set.

When I was a little girl patience and waiting for what I wanted wasn’t my strong suit. Like any voracious child; I wanted what I wanted and I wanted it now. My parents in their infinite wisdom used to respond with a lyric from a Rolling Stones song (yeah I have those kind of parents). This weekend I had to flex that seldom used muscle of patience with myself and my intense need to be constantly productive. One thing I can not be accused of is letting idle time go by. Accomplishment and goal setting has been a lifelong battle. Any creative person you talk to will probably say the same.

We work harder than most because our only product is our own work. So when obstacles get in the way of our goals we tend to derail our whole plan. ( yes artists let’s be honest ). So with that in mind, the idea of working diligently and patiently at something; anything, over a extended period of time is the theme of today’s post. I’m sure all of us have had this idea that if we just wish for it long enough things will just happen.

In the quick fix, fast results, no effort needed, “just add water”, buy now pay later, mentality of our modern world; I find slow, and steady progress to be a revolutionary act.

We all get bombarded by the before and after images of body, face, life, skills improvement, but the reality is, the shit we have to go through to make progress and get better at something is the real work not seen, which justifies the end result. Quick fixes don’t produce good work. Fast and cheap does’t make for anything worth keeping, and instant “out of the box” human connections don’t stand the test of time.

Delayed gratification yields a much sweeter reward than instant gratification with very little effort. We savor the riches of our labor and passions when we can stand the test of time. Until then, back to the drawing board.

What are you working on or have worked on over a long period of time and want to share with the world?

And remember:

You can’t always get what you want
You can’t always get what you want
You can’t always get what you want
But if you try sometimes you might find
You get what you need.

Eleana Kouneli

A former dancer, current yoga teacher, writer, curious traveler and wild soul. My fuel and desire is to learn from others and spread healing and joy as I go. Follow my adventures and see where they lead you! All the stories are true, all the poems are real and all the writing is mine. Enjoy

2 comments

  • Eleana, As a fellow artist I know the meaning of ..”..it’s going to take time to complete [This]..” I’ve learned over the years that I have to accept the needed time to complete a work or works to my satisfaction. One of the hardest aspects to get my students to pay attention to is “Process not Product”. They want what the “see” and they want it now. I have learned that the vision I have in my mind of any work will never be that way for a number of reasons: First, and foremost, if I could create it exactly as my vision, why bother as it already exists, there, in my mind. Secondly, and most important, the creative process is a very plastic one, it evolves and changes as we work and that can only make what ever it is we are working on that much better.
    As for “Rest”.. hahaha..yes, it is occasionally needed but hard to do.. I suggest to students in a class on Art Therapy I teach for them to schedule an hour sometimes in their week to do nothing, yes, Nothing! Turn off your Cell, your computer, etc, and just chill, do nothing, maybe read an actual book, but focus on doing nothing. For many of us, myself included, that is a very difficult but really important thing to do!

    Liked by 1 person

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