I’ve talked in the past about the health benefits of waiting (I can’t even remember which day it was!); the importance of holding back instead of plunging forward; how vital it is to observe rather than react. These are all qualities that I wish I possessed more of. I find that I do not think every single detail through. Some people would call that adventurous, courageous; others would call it premature and careless. But today, as I was reminded of my often quick-reacting personality, I on-the-spot discovered the Unexpected Health…in instant gratification.
Being instantly gratified is something Americans are very familiar with. We have quick fixes for just about anything, at any time, any day, and anywhere in the world. I can jump on the Internet and get my hands on absolutely anything I want with the click of an ‘Enter’ key. Now, the healthFUL aspects of instant gratification are actually hard to come by. Having everything so readily available makes us wait for nothing. In fact, the days of waiting are past tense. By the time you’ve read this sentence, you are probably already sick of having to wait for my punchline. Wait no longer: the Unexpected Health in instant gratification is that when we throw caution to the wind and act out of instinct (and I use this word choice very purposefully), we can cause a ripple effect of health for ourselves and others…and trusting our internal knowing is healthy.
Now, let me be clear; there is an enormous difference between acting from instinct and acting from insecurity. Instinctual action is a causal movement from a place of quiet, internal knowing. Insecure actions are those made from a place where our protective defenses take over our deeper sense of knowing what is most healthFUL for our lives. In other words, instant gratification from instinct is a much more healthFUL option. Let me give you an example…
Last night–after my corner booth conversation–my friend and I walked to our cars. Now, I had been carrying around a money tree in my car for a day or two. I had initially bought that tree for a friend who really needs some financial turnaround. But last night, I felt compelled to give this little plant away…immediately. Now, you might chalk it up to trying to get rid of this ‘green luck charm’, but it wasn’t. I just felt the immediate need to gratify some heart tug I was having; hence, a little instant gratification was in order. I, for some reason, needed to instantaneously gratify my heart’s need to listen to myself…and I did. Fast forward to today and the recipient of the money tree actually had a meeting today in which money was directly involved. So, my unceasing need to act immediately actually proved to be a need worth listening to. I could have easily saved the little plant for the original intended recipient, but I decided that it was more worthwhile to spend a little extra money and buy another plant. Pay it forward, right!?
It is easy to ignore our heart tugs; our inner sense of knowing. But when we listen, even to our moment of instant gratification, we can experience a little voice telling us what is going to bring about the most healthFUL outcome, the most beneficial ‘gift’ to ourselves and to others. So the next time you feel the need for a little instant gratification, remember that some of the greatest gifts we can give and receive are those moments when we act now, think later. -Until tomorrow, Jaime
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