In a comment last month, Michael writes,
So, my question is: if success is often dependent on delayed gratification and happiness is often dependent on enjoying the present, as well as achieving some measure of success, then how do we reconcile all these things?
What’s your answer?
I’ll start with mine, and would love to debate it.
Just like I wrote yesterday about doing exercise at 9:56pm on a Sunday to make sure I get in the right number of workouts for that week, I think you choose your battles. There are some things that you may be willing to delay gratification in – with the expectation of stronger gains in the future. I don’t mind not chilling and relaxing on a Sunday evening … as long as my cardio is stronger and my muscles more defined down the road.
I do mind having no weekends to myself – so that’s something I wouldn’t allow myself to do. In coaching, it’s easy to schedule people in on evenings, mornings, weekends. And I love doing early morning calls and evening calls, but I rarely, rarely do the weekend. That’s a sanity measure… even though to some degree delaying my weekends for a year might make the coaching business more exciting earlier, but – hey, why?
“Enjoying the present” – doesn’t this phrase sound like time passing slowly, like a river running. It’s almost, in answer to Michael – it’s almost that you may not be able to buckle down and do the discipline things unless you have enough psychological capital in you to be able to take those things on. And that psychological capital will come to a large degree from your taking good care of yourself, which may include enjoying the present.
To some degree, I see them feeding each other. What do you guys think?