THE MARSHMALLOW TEST, PART 1: THE POWER OF WILLPOWER

#marshmallowtest #willpower #achievegoals
Would you pass “The Marshmallow Test?”
In his book, “The Marshmallow Test: Mastering Self-Control,” Walter Mischel describes decades of research related to willpower.
Gregg Steinberg, professor of human performance at Austin Peay State University in Tennessee and author of “Full Throttle,” discussed Mischel’s research in a column in The Tennessean Newspaper in Nashville Feb. 15, 2015.
The Marshmallow Test involves 4-year-olds. They sit at a table, each with a marshmallow in front of them. The adults leave the room for upwards of 20 minutes. The children are told, as the adults are leaving, that they will get another marshmallow if they stay in their seats, and refrain from eating the marshmallow in front of them. The children also had the option of ringing a bell on the table, after which the experimenters would return and the children could eat their marshmallows.
How would you do?
You can go to youtube.com and check out a few videos of this process, Steinberg wrote.
Steinberg writes that the researchers discovered that the more seconds the child waited before ringing the bell, the higher they rated on social and cognitive functioning when they were retested decades later, Steinberg writes.
The study found that those children who waited longest to eat their treat had higher SAT scores, lower body mass index a better sense of self-worth, pursued their goals more effectively and dealt better with stress, Steinberg writes.
As adults, some of us hate marshmallows and could sit there for hours without touching it, or ringing the bell. In the meantime, we could amuse ourselves checking e-mail on our phones, texting our friends etc.
So, we could pass the literal marshmallow test with flying colors.
We might even be able to pass the test if the marshmallow were substituted for something we love, be it chocolate, steak, etc.
We might even tell ourselves that as adults, we have far more patience than a child.
But let’s take it a step further. What goal do you have sitting in front of you that you’d love to achieve, but may find difficult to achieve?
Is it making lots of money, or having a secure retirement? Is it moving up the ladder in your company, or even just surviving in your company for as long as you want to?
Do you want your goal badly enough to do what you know you need to do to achieve it? Do you have what it takes to deal with the inevitable pitfalls that will come your way, yet not stray from your mission to achieve that goal?
If so, consider yourself passing The Marshmallow Test. Should you find yourself short of tactics to help you achieve your goal, visit www.bign.com/pbilodeau. You’ll see one of the many ways to achieve goals that your current circumstances may not help you achieve.
Life, like marshmallows, can be a bit squishy. But goals, and the willpower to achieve them, keep you firm. Stay firm. Step over life’s squishiness. Stay patient. Achieve your goals. They are there for those who wait, and work smartly.
Peter

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