Where there’s a will, there’s a way. English Proverb
People do not lack strength; they lack will. Victor Hugo
Giving in to instant gratification is an indication of weakness. Many of our woes and difficulties are due to weak and undisciplined wills. It is difficult for us to say “NO”. We give in to immediate and short term gratification instead of choosing to do what is best for our long term good. We lack focus and self discipline.
Many of us have one or more of the following weaknesses: over eating, too much drinking too much TV, insufficient exercising, poor nutrition, buying things on credit, gossip, procrastination and being disorganized. These are gratification issues. Our motivational and discipline problems are detrimental to our well-being. For those with emotional eating issues, gratification is at the core of our weakness. Giving in to the desires to eat because of emotional needs, gives immediate gratification, making us feel better, but costs us by being harmful to our long term health and well-being. We would be so much better if we had the intestinal fortitude and will power to resist such temptations. The end result would be better health and happiness.
One of the criticisms of today’s business world is company executives succumbing to the pressures of making short term decisions, even “cooking the books” to make profit and loss statements look better in the short term. Often these decisions are not in the company’s long term best interests. The executives are under pressure to look good today even though it may be misleading, dishonest and even unethical. They lack will power and discipline. They cannot resist the lure of giving in to the pressures of trying to looking good in the short term.
Giving in to short term pleasures is often unwise and dumb; but we do it anyway. We lack the will power, self-discipline, motivation and personal accountability to control ourselves. The emotional need for short term gain or pleasure overpowers and trumps our long term higher needs. This happens because we do not have conscious control; are unable to resist basic emotions; and lack the mental strength to hold ourselves more accountable.
Overcoming these issues is obviously very tough to do. It requires our very best effort and long term commitment; engaging in and addressing all the conditions that make us so weak-willed. This is a fundamental weakness for so many. “Where there’s a will, there is a way”. If we want to “bad enough” we can take control.
Challenge: Would you like to exercise more control over instant gratification? It involves saying “NO” to yourself. It involves overcoming short-term pleasures for your greater good. It takes self-discipline, motivation, will power and self control. The first step is seeing and believing in yourself. These strengths will get reinforced every time you do not give in, say no, and make better decisions. Your strength will grow by one successful decision at a time.
Wisdom: Strength does not come from physical capacity. It comes from an indomitable will. Mahatma Gandhi
But if we hope for that we see not, then do we with patience wait for it. Romans 8:25
Know this, that the trying of your faith worketh patience. But let patience have her perfect work, that ye may be perfect and entire, wanting nothing. James 1:3, 4
We live by faith, not by sight. 2 Corinthians 5:7
The secular world sells “if it feels good do it’. Self indulgence, selfishness, living for today, living beyond our means all go along with instant gratification. It is hard to look around and see people refraining from the temptations of short term and immediate pleasure. Self discipline is woefully short and is one of the most difficult successful living traits to acquire or master. God is there to help us with this if we will but ask him.
Prayer: Help me to have the strength to have self-discipline in my life. Enable me to overcome temptations.