Thursday, June 23, 2022

Self-Control, Impulsiveness, and Gratification

    Overcoming impulsiveness and mastering the art of self control are two things that are extremely crucial in today’s age of instant gratification. However, this is much easier said than done. According to the text, “immediate consequences are generally more powerful than delayed consequences, a fact that can readily lead to suboptimal choices” (Powell et al., 2017). The task of choosing a larger later reward versus a smaller sooner reward, known as a delay of gratification, is a task where self-control is primordial. On the contrary, choosing a smaller sooner reward over a larger later reward is known as instant gratification which often results from impulsiveness. For this reason, people may find themselves in unfavorable situations due to impatience and lack of self control.

    With each day that passes by, I see how impatient we as a society are growing, with a significantly declining attention span, and always looking for instant gratification not only due to quick and easy access to the internet, but also due to the consuming presence of social media in our daily lives. This in turn translates to many other aspects of our day to day when partaking in destructive habits in search of that instant gratification. The text provides a very useful means for facilitating self-control. The chapter claims that early commitment to the larger later reward, made before the smaller sooner reward becomes near, can serve to lower the smaller sooner reward's value such that it stays below the larger later reward's value. I completely agree with this, and although it does take much more effort, it is definitely worth it in the end. Below I have attached a TedTalk that really helps elucidate the topic of self control and how to develop it.

Powell, R. A., Honey, P. L., & Symbaluk, D. G. (2017). Introduction to Learning and Behavior (5th

    ed.). Cengage Learning. 


  1. A study that came to mind while reading your post is the Stanford marshmallow experiment! Kids were told if they wait, they may receive more of a reward at the end compared to taking the sweet treat right away. It is interesting to see what kids will have that self control to receive a more gratifying reward, and which ones will compulsively take the treat right away.

  2. I can relate to this topic and the self-control and gratification. I believe that nowadays everything is moving in such a fast pace, and it is very difficult to be patient. Social media has influenced this greatlly. During the pandemic, I became attracted to the whole wave of investing in cryptos and in the stcok market. In the world of invesments there are short term and long term investments. Long term investments are usually the most accurate and predictable way to invest in the stock market. Thanks to a wave of people that only wanted to invest in a short term and get profits from one ay to another, the market became inflated and it just crushed. Leaving many people with losses.