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  • Writer's pictureAdil Malia

Self-control and Marshmallows...

Self-control and Marshmallows...

Long-term achievement of larger goals is a direct outcome of our ability to resist indulgence in short-term gratification offered by conflicting temptations !!!. Despite knowing, a certain false sense of confidence intoxicates and takes over...making us believe that such is the last time that you are indulging and that you have some magical plans to make up for all the loss.....beginning tomorrow !!! Not that 'Missfit' does not know what it takes to become Miss Fit ! (see the doodle please). The key to ones self-control is directly linked to ones 'self-regulation'...which in a way is a part of her/his emotional intelligence that enables an individual to understand how ones emotions impact onces immediate responses and behaviours. Th 2013 re-validation of the Marshmallow Expriments - are interesting here to recall (of what I now remember). Children in a room were given cheap crayons and blank papers. They were told that those who would wait to use these crayons till the experiment time ended, would be given a new pack of better crayons. Some used and most resisted. At the end of the experiment time, some of those who resisted using the crayons were given new crayons as promised. The others despite having resisted were not given the promised crayons. All those who had originally resisted using crayons were put thereafter in a new room and offered very attractive Marshmallows to eat. But with a similar promise...if they resisted eating it till the end of the experiment time, they would be given yet another bowl of Marshmallows and they could eat both thereafter. What happened ? Who resisted? Who did not ? The people in the original group who were rewarded with new crayons when they had resisted, showed a higher resistance to eating the attractive Marshmallow during the hour of experiment. All those who had resisted using crayons but we're not given the promised new pack of crayons, did not resist or wait for the experiment hour to end before they started eating the attractive bowl of Marshmallows that were offered!!! Environment that established a belief in the Promise, generated reliability and trust. Respondents thus repeated the positive behaviours. Respondents who felt let-down did not trust or feel the environment was reliable. Thus they were not inclined to trust or repeat positive behaviours. Lesson for all of us as leaders is simple. If we break trust of our teams by non-fulfillment of our promises, we build an unreliable environment that is non-condusive to positive behaviours. That environment is bound to crumble under the burden of distrust. 

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