04/7/10

Sinai 5.0 CountUp day 9 4/7 Know to say No 2 Now: less instant gratification.

Day 9. Try the marshmallow test .

On day 9 of my count up to mount sinai’s night #50 of more love and mindfulness I stumble across boulders of mindlessness and pebbles of sloth. I want to slow down, focus more, yield less to distractions and desires for this and that. Which brings me to marshmallows. Not the thing itself – I have zero craving for it in any form, but I recently interviewed a great educator by the name of Hannah Solomon (she’s opening a new charter school in Brooklyn this fall) who told me about the marshmallow experiment of self control. Researched in Stanford have been doing this experiment with kids for over 50 years and have some neat results. Basically, you give a 3 year old kid a marshmallow and promise her another one if she waits a while – or she can eat it right away. They measure responses, and follow the kids’ progress through school. The kids who score high on self control and delaying gratification score higher on educational test scores and several other attractive attributes of a healthy emotional intelligence.
watch this hilarious clip: http://tinyurl.com/marshmovie
or read this great New Yorker article. http://www.newyorker.com/reporting/2009/05/18/090518fa_fact_lehrer
or more here: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Deferred_gratification

Or TEST THYSELF, as I did this morning….Maybe not on a marshmallow: reading emails, that extra snack or cup of coffee, instant txting (and expecting replies right away) etc.
Today’s count is Gevura of Gevura: discipline of discipline. It’s serious. How can one climb this mountain without the diligent control, patience and persistence that go beyond immediate gratification but are aways grounded in the here and now?
sometimes no to now is the right thing to know.. I’m trying.
now: 9 days. 1 week and 2 days, and 41 to go.