Monday, October 17, 2011

Are you failing the marshmallow experiment?

How often have you made a decision based on seeking immediate gratification? It may not have looked like that at the time. In the moment, that decision may have seemed expedient, served to release anxiety, or even resolved (albeit temporarily) some emotional need you were feeling pressed by. In retrospect, in reviewing the action or decision made - one prompted largely by the impulse to alleviate stress or modify discomfort -  did that decision or action work out for you in the end? If not ... you may be failing the "marshmallow experiment." I, for one, am learning to save my marshmallow and - in the meantime - have it under lock and (thrown away the) key! You? Read on...

The Stanford marshmallow experiment was a study on deferred gratification. Conducted in 1972 by psychologist Walter Mischel of Stanford University,[1]the experiment has been repeated many times since. The original study at Stanford has been "regarded as one of the most successful behavioural experiments".[2] In the study, a marshmallow was offered to each child. If the child could resist eating the marshmallow, he was promised two instead of one. The scientists analyzed how long each child resisted the temptation of eating the marshmallow, and whether or not doing so had an effect on their future success.[3] The results provided researchers with great insight on the psychology of self control.  -- Wikipedia  

Read marshmallow experiment to learn what this experiment predicted and the outcome ...


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