Posts

BIGG Success Logo boxed

The Marshmallow Test

The Marshmallow Experiment was conducted in the 1960s by Walther Mischel at Stanford University. It was popularized by Daniel Goleman, perhaps best known for his books Emotional Intelligence and Social Intelligence.

The test
The researchers gathered a group of four-year olds in a room. A researcher set a marshmallow in front of each kid. The kids were told that the researcher needed to run an errand. If the kid didn’t eat the marshmallow before the researcher got back, the kid would be given a second marshmallow. However, if the kid ate the marshmallow, he or she would not get another one.

Picture yourself at four-years old.
Could you have resisted that tasty marshmallow?

Some ate their marshmallow before the researcher even got out of the room! Others seem to have no problem not resisting the temptation. Some turned their back on the marshmallow. Others sang a song or distracted themselves in other ways. One kid reportedly even licked the table around the marshmallow!

The reward for waiting was pretty good – a 100 percent increase in marshmallows! Interestingly enough, ALL the kids expected a second marshmallow – even the kids who ate theirs!

The follow-up
The researchers tracked these kids in the subsequent years. They surveyed their parents and their teachers. They found that, in general, the kids who had been able to resist the marshmallows were better adjusted and more dependable.

They were more competent socially and more self-assertive. They were able to cope with frustration and stress much better. They embraced challenges rather than seeing them as a huge obstacle. They also scored 210 points higher on their SAT exams.

So what’s your marshmallow?
We’ve all heard about rock-n-rollers who came to fame and fortune early. They make a lot of money; then blow it all. They think it will always be there.

Some time later, we hear they’re out touring again, because they’re out of money. They have to start over because they don’t have any marshmallows left. Obviously we’re stereotyping rock-n-rollers … they haven’t all fallen into this trap.

Here’s the ironic thing — by resisting that treat now, you can have more later! Here are some thoughts to help you get the most marshmallows.

#1 – Keep your eye on the final prize.
Focus on what you ultimately want, not your marshmallows. 71 What’s your dream life]? Keep that in front of you. You’ll resist the marshmallows now so you get more later.

#2 – Find techniques that work for you.
Just like with the kids, we each need to find what works best for us. For example, you may find that paying yourself first helps you resist your marshmallows. Many people have found that as long as they don’t see the money, they don’t miss it.

Other people won’t buy anything unless they have the cash to pay for it. This simple requirement helps them resist many marshmallows.

Mary-Lynn shared her technique – she focuses on her needs, rather than her wants. She’s ready for a new smart phone. She wants an iPhone, but she’ll get a phone that’s a couple of hundred dollars less. It suits her needs just fine.

 

How do you resist the marshmallows in your life? Leave us a comment.

#3 – Reward yourself when you reach a desired goal.
A couple of days ago, we talked about 144 The Stairway To Success]. We discussed the steps that will get you to the top of your stairway. When you reach a desired goal – reward yourself.

Don’t overdo it – you do want to enjoy a marshmallow now and then … just don’t get so full that you can’t make it up the stairs!

 

Get our FREE Bigg Goal-Setters Workbook.

It’s a great tool to help you set your marshmallow marks – those points where you give yourself a treat! Just sign up for the Bigg Success Weekly newsletter – It’s FREE, too!

Our Bigg Quote today is by the great Brian Tracy:

“The ability to discipline yourself to delay gratification
in the short term in order to enjoy greater rewards in the
long term is the indispensable pre-requisite for success.”

So plan your life and live your plan …. and go ahead, have a marshmallow now and then!

Next time, we’ll answer a question from one of our listeners who wants to know if he should count on his employer’s counter offer.

In the meantime, we’re off for a cup of hot chocolate … topped with marshmallows, of course! Until then, here’s to your bigg success!

Related Posts:

  71 Back To The Future: Visualize The Life You Want (Part 2)]

144 The Stairway To Success]

stairway

Climbing The Stairway To Success

stairway

Today, we’ll discuss how to reach your goals, step-by-step. We toyed with calling this blog the “Stairway to Heaven”, but we’re Bigg Success, not Bigg Heaven!

On the show, Mary-Lynn told an amusing story from her radio dj days about locking herself out of her building while “Stairway to Heaven” was playing. Listen to the show to hear it! Click on the play button above (just click the arrow), or, if you are viewing this in a reader, just click the mp3 button or link.

Picture this … you’re in a 100-story building. You’re at the bottom of a stairway, but you can see all the way to the top.

Can you jump to the top?

Superman could leap over tall buildings in a single bound, but that’s a cartoon!

Could you jump up even one flight of stairs?

Even Michael Jordan couldn’t do that, not even with a running start!

Could you take one step?

You can handle that!

Now how about a second?

Of course.

Your success is like this stairwell. You can’t jump to it – you get there step-by-step. Let’s look at three mistakes people make when setting their goals and then we’ll offer three tips to get to the top of your stairway to success.

3 mistakes people make when setting their goals

Mistake #1: Trying to jump to the top.

People want instant success. Get rich quick. It’s nearly impossible. Ask almost any successful person. They started at the bottom and worked their way up.

Mistake #2: More than one building.

You see people who climb a stairway in this building. Then they climb a stairway in another building. They climb a lot of stairs, but they never get past the second floor of any building!

Mistake #3: Never stopping to rest.

You need to refresh yourself – give yourself a little treat. Don’t be so eager to get to the top that you never reward yourself for the progress that you’ve made. If you don’t rest occasionally, you’ll wear yourself out.

3 tips to get to the top of your stairway

Tip #1: Find your building and the stairway in it that leads to the top.

The building is your dream … your passion. The stairway is your action plan – all the steps it will take. You need long-term goals. That’s why it’s important to have one building and one stairway. Everything you’re doing should lead to the top.

Tip #2: Set medium-term and short-term goals.

Medium-term goals are represented by a flight of stairs. Short-term goals are each step.

By focusing on these achievable goals, you aren’t intimidated by the long-term goals. They keep you from giving up and going to another building, because you’re seeing progress toward your long-term goals.

Long-term goals give you direction. Medium-
and short-term goals show your progress.

Tip #3: Give yourself a treat.

You may or may not do this with each step, but you better do it with each flight of stairs! Enjoy your accomplishment! Give yourself a reward … something you really want …like an extra day off, a weekend away, or a cool new gadget.

So you’re climbing YOUR stairway to success … to YOUR bigg dream. That motivates you, BUT you also reward yourself for your progress. That keeps you motivated!

Our Bigg Quote today is by Mabel Newcomber.

“It is more important to know where you are going than to get there quickly.”

So climb your stairway to success step-by-step to your bigg dream. What may seem impossible now … becomes probable with every step you take.

How do you reward yourself when you achieve a goal? Share with us by leaving a comment.

Next time, we’ll discuss some recent research on customer trust and how you can capitalize on it. Until then, here’s to your bigg success!

Direct link to The Bigg Success Show audio file | podcast:
http://traffic.libsyn.com/biggsuccess/00046-011408

BIGG Success Logo boxed

Hassle Me

By Bigg Success Staff
December 14, 2007

Leading-edge applications

This Tool Helps You Keep Your New Year’s Resolutions

Need help keeping your New Year’s resolutions? Hassle Me is a leading-edge tool that will remind you of your goals and “hassle” you at random times within pre-determined parameters.

But it will do more than that. It nags you so the ones you love don’t have to. Or to put it another way …

…. it nags the ones you love so you don’t have to!

Take out the garbage. Pick up your room. Do your homework. Go for a walk. The possibilities are almost endless.

Hassle_Me_Screenshot

Hassle Me was created by Chris Lightfoot and Etienne Pollard of mySociety, a non-profit organization that provides people with simple on-line tools to fulfill their civic duties and serve their communities.

They acknowledge that the concept of Hassle Me shouldn’t work. They used a similar application to encourage people to post to their blog, and it was successful! So they developed Hassle Me.

Set it up today so you’ll be ready for the New Year!

Hear today's lesson and laugh on The Bigg Success Show. 

BIGG Success Logo boxed

The Communication Debate: E-mail, Phone, Or Face Time?

Surgeons have a number of tools available to them. They choose the right tool for the circumstances. Think of surgeons the next time you need to communicate with someone. Consider all the tools available and choose the right ones.

There are three things you should mull over before you select your communication tool.

  • Know your audience.
  • All of us have our own preferences, including the person, or persons, you plan to contact. If possible, use their favorite method to connect with them. Too often, we do what’s most convenient for us. You should make it easy for them.

  • Consider the subject.
  • Are you trying to convey a simple message? Or is it complex? Does the subject lend itself to “one-way and wait” dialogue, or would real-time two-way conversation be more productive? The answers to these questions may dictate your method of contact.

  • Think effectiveness.
  • As with any interpersonal communication, effectiveness is more important than efficiency. What’s the best way to deliver your message so it’s understood? Focus on achieving your desired result, not how fast you can get it done.

Here are some examples:

  • If you need a response, but you can wait … just e-mail me.
  • If you need an immediate response … let me hear your sexy voice.
  • You need to present a very complex idea … let me see your lovely face.
  • You want to follow-up on a meeting or an interview … just e-mail me.
  • You need to discuss a delicate situation … let me see your lovely face.
  • I’m very busy and you need to get answers fast … let me hear your sexy voice.
  • You need to negotiate a deal … let me see your lovely face.

Of course, you may determine that more than one method of contact is appropriate. For example, you might e-mail me to schedule a face-to-face meeting.

As a fallback, e-mail is great because it is the least invasive. Obviously, face-to-face is the most invasive. But meeting in person is the richest form of communication. E-mail is at the bottom of that list.

Our quote today comes from Lee Iacocca.

“You can have brilliant ideas, but if you can’t get
them across, your ideas won’t get you anywhere.”

So get it right – use the right communication method at the right time for the right crowd in the right way.

Tomorrow, we’ll look at what to do when a co-worker bad mouths you. How should you confront this difficult situation? Until then, here’s to your big success!

BIGG Success Logo boxed

Review: Geek Gap

By Bigg Success Staff
November, 25 2007

Bigg Book Review

The Geek Gap: Why Business And Technology Professionals Don’t Understand Each Other And Why They Need Each Other to Survive

Book by Bill Pfleging and Minda Zetlin 

Technology and business pros (“geeks” and “suits”, respectively, in this book) often find working together to be a challenge. Bill Pfleging, self-proclaimed geek, and Minda Zetlin, representing the suits, have written this insightful book to help you understand the other side.

As the use of technology continues to proliferate, you’ll find that knowing how to close the gap between the two worlds is a critical skill.

First, seek to understand
In this book, you’ll find a specific example of Steven Covey’s general principle – “seek first to understand” – as discussed in The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People. The authors assert that geeks like to solve problems, while suits rely on influencing people. Through numerous examples, you’ll come to understand the other side, so they can understand you.

Then, learn to value
Suits view technology as a tool to accomplish their goals; geeks see technology as a “living, breathing thing.” These diverse points-of-view strengthen your organization.

Whether you’re a geek or a suit, you’ll find practical suggestions to help you learn to value the complementary skill sets of your co-workers. That’s a skill that will help you advance in your career.

Final note
While this book reports to be about geeks and suits, it’s really a book about working with people who think differently than you. If you want to improve your ability to communicate with others, we think you’ll find this book useful.