Delayed Gratification

The first anniversary of Jaagruthi was held at Banjara Academy R.V.Road Branch. The program was attended by about 30-35 members of the Banjara Academy. Ex-DCS students, students from the current batch of DCS and volunteers from Helping Hands were present.

Place: Banjara Academy, R.V.Road
Date: 4 Feb 2011
Time: 3 p.m. to 4.30 p.m.
Topic: Delayed gratification

Jaagruti Counsellors Forum Meet, Delayed Gratification, Feb 11

Prafulla and Ash shared a few points about Jaagruthi. Prafulla talked about Jaagruthi and the purpose of starting it. They Mentioned that Jaagruthi had started a year ago and was headed by Raja and Nalini. Every meeting was organised on the first Friday of every month where generally the ex-students of DCS would gather to share their views about a given topic. Not many people knew about Jaagruthi, and this First year anniversary was arranged to make people aware of the programmes held here.

Surekha shared her experience and said that Jagruthi was a platform where there was connectivity with like minded people which was very rewarding. Exchanging of ideas also made the discussions very interesting. The values shared were well understood and very informative to the mind. Jaagruthi was an opportunity where one could learn many ideas and values by sharing was a common good to all.

Jaagruti Counsellors Forum Meet, Delayed Gratification, Feb 11 Dr. Ali spoke on the topic 'Delayed Gratification'. He told about Pramela who had always sent him relevant details about various topics that were given as home work every month for Mann Milan. He also appreciated her for keeping the matter brief and also for sending the note every month without fail.

The Marshmallows experiment was mentioned by Dr. Ali, which was conducted with the help of some 50 children. The objective of this experiment was to know the behavior of children and how it will have an affect on them in the future. Some Marshmallows were placed in front of the children and they were told that only those children who wait for them patiently will be given more than one marshmallows and the ones who were impatient and wanted them immediately would get only one. It was also told to them that this would take place everyday. It was noted that some children waited till the end of the time period and were rewarded with more than one marshmallows and there were some children who were so impatiently that they never bothered about the consequences and just took away all the marshmallows that they could.

Jaagruti Counsellors Forum Meet, Delayed Gratification, Feb 11

The experiment started in 1960 and has continued till 2010, which meant that some of them were about 50 years of age now. It was also observed that those children who were patient enough to wait for the marshmallows had a very peaceful life, they were well settled and had a good professional and personal life, in contrary to the ones who were impatient. The children who were impatient, had grown up to be more impatient and had a very unsettled life where they changed jobs, relationships etc. this experiment showed how the patterns once set is very difficult to change.

The time has changed very fast, and everything has become very instant like instant coffee. People have no patience to wait, they need everything in an instant. Like how instant coffee has changed from filter coffee. A few years ago there was no instant coffee, and in order to make coffee, one had to make what is called decoction. This process would take sometime and people were used to waiting patiently for coffee.

Another change that has taken place is the use of mobile phones from land lines. Till a few years ago there were only landlines, and people were also comfortable with this method of communication, where a person could be reached only if he in that place. But now after the invention of the mobile phone, anyone can reach a person anywhere around the world. Even the method of communication has become the same where people in the era of communication have less time to communicate. This is how the world today has changed.

Jaagruti Counsellors Forum Meet, Delayed Gratification, Feb 11To explain more about this Dr. Ali gave an exercise and asked them how would a mobile phone look like after 15 years. Some answered that it would be like a chip, some said it would become smaller, etc. then Dr. Ali said that if one is asked this question after 15 years they would return the question and ask the person what is a mobile phone. This is because the mobile phones are going to get extinct after 15 years, the same way as the pagers are extinct now. Pagers were a break through in technology about 15 years ago, and have now become out dated. This is the speed at which the technology is progressing, and one will be left out if they are not able to keep up with the pace.

One should also know the value of money and they will know it only if they are earning it. As an example Dr. Ali mentioned about a conversation that took place between a young man and Swami Vivekananda. Once a young man who had completed his education decided to do something different from others, he thought of helping the society and donating all his wealth to others. To get a second opinion he decided to meet Swami Vivekananda. When he spoke to Swami Vivekananda, sharing his idea, and Swami Vivekananda asked the young man to first find a job for himself and then to donate the money that he has earned. The young man was puzzled and asked him for explanation, for which Swami Vivekananda said that one will know the value of something only if he has earned it and then he can decide whether to donate it or save it for himself.

Jaagruti Counsellors Forum Meet, Delayed Gratification, Feb 11Dr. Ali also mentioned how an individual fails to differentiate between needs and wants. He has developed this from a very young age, and he will find it difficult to make important decisions later in his life. It is very important that a child learns to distinguish between the both. He should know that the needs such as healthy food, sleep or bath are important for him, as it will keep him healthy. And wants such as ice creams or chocolates are unimportant, he may like them and he may also be given the same, but first he should learn to understand the difference.

Another example of delayed gratification was mentioned by Dr. Ali. Dr. Kumar, the principal of M.S.Ramaiah College had mentioned about his students and how they had helped a village. It was a routine that the medical students were sent to a 15 day educational trip to a remote village every year. They were told to know the basic medical needs of the village. One batch had returned from such a trip and spoke to the Principal, telling him about various difficulties faced by the villagers. A student was explaining that a worst problem they were facing was lack of toilets, the student mentioned that the ladies of the village had to wake up at 3 o'clock in the morning because they finish their toilets before day light. A few months went past and one day the Principal found a few students awaiting for him at his office. They to requested him to inaugurate something in the village, they were also hesitating at the same time. They then told that it was the toilets that they had built for the villagers that had to inaugurated. The Principal was very happy looking at the concern and efforts taken by the students. He also mentioned that we only have ignite the minds of students, and they can do wonders.

Giving an exercise for difference in generation Dr. Ali asked all the participants to write down names of five people who were above 50 years and also asked them to write down the number of siblings they had. Next they were asked to write the names of five people of their generation and the number of children they had. He also asked them to note the difference between the figures of both the generations

Jaagruti Counsellors Forum Meet, Delayed Gratification, Feb 11Dr. Ali also mentioned of his experience at sunset point at Mahabaleshwar in Mumbai. He said that at the sunset point, people would gather during the evenings, and it had become quite a popular place where one could find shopkeepers and vendors. This place looked very lively in the evenings and people would find it as a good place to relax with family. But every time the sunset was complete there would always be a big crowd heading back home and since the road was narrow they would always be a traffic block. And to avoid this some people would start hurrying up to go home before sunset and hurrying their children also who will be enjoying the sunset. Dr. Ali mentioned how this was a very good platform to learn human behavior.

Dr. Ali concluded the talk by mentioning that nature would teach everything including delayed gratification and also mentioned a story of a small boy who lived in a farm house. He would spend his free time in the farm and the garden. The boy started to noticing a few butterflies coming out of its cocoon. He observed how they were struggling to break free from the cocoon and came out with an idea. He decided to cut the cocoon with a blade and free them without realizing the consequences. When he cut one of the cocoons' the butterfly fell to the ground and was lying on the ground not able to fly, it struggled for some time and then died. The small boy, due to his ignorance did not realize that the butterfly which was struggling to break from the cocoon was gathering energy to fly, and it was natures' method of preparing the butterfly for its life.

Raja mentioned the topic for the next meeting of 'Jaagruthi' which was to share the experiences of delayed gratification.

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