Teach Delayed Gratification by Example
According to M. Scott Peck, “Delaying gratification is a process of scheduling the pain and pleasure of life in such way as to enhance the pleasure by meeting and experiencing the pain first and getting it over with. It is the only decent way to live.”
Do you have the discipline it takes to wait? Are you teaching your children how to save for something they want? Do they see you waiting and saving?
We are seeing, worldwide, what happens when we want to have – before we pay for. . .whatever it is we want. Students who succeed learn this lesson early on. Their parents reinforce it.
However, if the child doesn’t see the parent demonstrate the process they may never get it. Budgeting is just one area in which delayed gratification pays off. Here are some budget pointers from the Texas Society of CPAs.
- Consider fixed monthly expenses such as rent, insurance, and utilities, as well as flexible expenses like food, clothing and car repairs.
- Collect pay stubs, checkbook register, debit and credit card statements, and begin to allocate expenses into different categories.
- Track every dime.
- Instead of paying bills and saving what is left over, if anything, decide how much should be saved each month and set it aside before paying other bills.
- Once a month, record and categorize the current month’s income and expenses.
- Budgeting gets better with practice, and it could take several months or more before you arrive at a budget you can live with.
When you show your children-and yourself-the reward of delaying gratification for something you desire, you both will have learned a valuable life lesson – Good things come to those who wait.
Gail holds a degree from Lamar University in Speech and a Master’s from the University of Texas. She married Sam after raising three children as a single mother. She was an educator in regular and special education for eighteen years, finishing her professional career as a Braille teacher. In 2007 She founded SMORE for Women. SMORE is a nonprofit association whose goal is Single Moms, Overjoyed, Rejuvenated, & Empowered. She is a Women’s Transition Coach and her stories have been published in several Christian books and magazines.