Self-Control and the Stanford Marshmallow Experiment

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I launched FinanceSuperhero in April 2016 to help others save money, get out of debt, earn more money, and live the best life possible. Send me an e-mail or a comment if I can help you in your journey. Thanks for reading!

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15 Responses

  1. We actually did this with both our boys when they were quite young. Actually, it was the Swedish Fish test, but same idea.

    Both passed with flying colors. Have you seen video of kids doing this? My wife watched a documentary recently where this test was performed, and she said it was hilarious to see the kids squirm and struggle to distract themselves.

    Have a great weekend!
    Best,
    -PoF

    • With a kid on the way, I absolutely plan to revisit this when the time comes. I like the Swedish Fish idea!

      I’ve watched a couple of the videos on YouTube and agreed, it’s pretty funny stuff.

  2. Thanks for the guest post, Ryan! So many people struggle with delayed gratification. I’m not sure how I would have done when I was younger, but I can tell you I have no problem with delayed gratification now. It’s so powerful and means too much for my future self!

    Shocking the follow up statistics on the Stanford study!!

    • Glad you enjoyed the read! I myself struggled with delayed gratification for many years but once you get focused it’s amazing how easy it becomes.

      I know right! Who would have ever thought that a simple marshmallow could be such an indicator of future life success?

  3. You make some great points here and I like how you tie it in with the Marshmallow experiment. I especially like your point about setting goals and visualizing it. A lot of people save and delay without a specific end game in mind, and its hard to keep it up when you don’t know exactly what’s at the end of the rainbow.

    • Definitely agree about having specific goals before taking action, otherwise what’s the point? If we don’t understand why we are doing something we will most certainly fail.

      Everbody learns differently, it’s all about finding what works for you!

  4. I am all over this study! My 8 year old made me so proud last year when he went to a birthday part at the circus. We had just gone the week before and I knew what terrible garbage they were selling for insane prices. But I didn’t want him to be the only kid whose mom didn’t give him any money to buy something. So I gave him $20 and I told him that if he didn’t spend the money on something dumb at the circus, when he got home we could get him a toy or something that he really wanted, even if it cost a little more. When he proudly came home with his $20 I was so happy. I know that he will have better impulse control in his life than I ever did!

    • That’s a great story, thanks for sharing! It sounds like your little guy is already making great decisions that will pay off for years to come. Hopefully he doesn’t hit you up for the latest x-box (is that still a thing?) !!

  5. Powerful post, Frugal Familia!

    Many thanks for this…some especially thought-provoking nuggets for parents (like me)!

    Great stuff.

    (P.S. I’d pass the crap out of that marshmallow test. I can’t stand those things. What prize was offered the kid who traded his two marshmallows for some other kid’s lunch money?)

  6. I think I would, but only if I was able to think about the marshmellows as delayed financial gratification, otherwise I’d probably crush em in my mouth

  7. This is a great post and I often remember this study when I put off buying my dream car 🙁 I know one day I will be in a financial position to buy it but the four year in me says I want it NOW.

  1. September 9, 2016

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