Delayed Gratification

Delayed Gratification
August 27, 2017 Gary Shotton

Living in a world focused on Instant Gratification, makes it harder to learn to understand that good things take time.  By Gary Shotton #000153

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Delayed Gratification

By Gary Shotton

Hello, my name’s Gary Shotton and I’m here in my machine shop. I’m here talking to you about inspiring better business. In this lesson, I want to talk about delayed gratification. Let me think about those two words. Delayed means there’s a time between when we start, and when we finish. And gratification could mean that we are enjoying the fruits of our labor. Or we’re gratified because we’ve done something and now we’ve accomplished something. And it implies something of value, or worth. And you put those together, delayed gratification.

And I’m gonna talk to you on just really five different levels.

  • Nature talks about that.
  • Our spending talks about that.
  • I’m gonna talk to you about it in the realm of starting a business.
  • And I want to talk about it in the realm of rental properties, if you have leased properties.
  • And I’m finish up with if you wanted to buy a business.

There’s some form of delayed gratification in each one of those. Now we all know a little bit about seedtime and harvest. And so, that would be the absolute most natural example of anything we’re talking about. We put a seed in the ground and at some point later than that point that we put it in the ground we might pack it down a little bit. Remember I’m a farm kid. So, you would put the seed in the ground preferably down where there’s a little moisture. You would put a little pressure; you pack the ground around it. And then if it’s not already wet there might add just a little water, not too much that would crust over the top. And then you wait. You wait until it becomes a product. A plant produces normally its seed or its product. Now you might add fertilizer, you might add water I understand that. But it’s delayed. I lived in the north part of the United States and we had to be careful to know that if we want corn on the cob like out of the garden that it had a certain length of time. And you could look right on the package that this would be like 90-day corn. So, you planted it, on an average it would be 90 days before it’d be ripe. There’s another corn you could make it, it would be a 100, 110, or 120 days before it’s ripe. We needed the shorter because we had a shorter growing season. I planted some apple trees and so when I put the seed or a little seedling; it wasn’t a seed it was a small tree. You have to wait a while until you get apples. Natural. We understand that.

On a personal side, wow, I see this so often. We kind of think that we can start a job, or we can start a business, or on our employment that almost immediately we’re going to have the big house and the nice big car. Or we’re going to have the things that Mom and Dad had. Or well, just a second, you know the standard that Mom and Dad set probably didn’t happen as fast as you thought it was. You weren’t there to see it. There was a delay in them being blessed to the level that they are. Just think about it. It doesn’t make sense that we’re like in a microwave society. Put the meal in the microwave, punch 20 seconds, make sure it’s on high heat outcomes a well-cooked delicious meal. No, you warmed up something. Somebody else cooked it. So, the delay is even in our spending. The way we do things. We’re obviously on the other end and I won’t go too long on this. We, a lot of times flip out the credit card and we’re worse than delayed gratification. We’re spending way before we even have a chance of making the payment on it. Enough on that.

Starting a business. Now I’ve started a business from scratch, and it was seven years before I was somewhat respected enough before the bank would consider loaning me money. That was a delay. I had to show them history, I had to show them that I had some kind of collateral but that I had a payment history that was favorable to them. Because they wanted me to pay that money back that I borrowed from them. And you know, the more I borrowed the more I had to pay back. That extended it out. Sometimes I wished I had never borrowed any money. I know of a few people that had a business even that size at that time that were able to do it and never borrowed any money. That’s another subject. But I had a delay before I started growing and seeing the benefits up.

I have and I mention this some rental properties. It’s interesting on rental properties. If you buy the property you should, first of all, buy it as economically as you can, and if you borrow money then you make a plan to pay it off in a period. Hopefully seven years. And in that period you’re making payments on that and so you’re also paying for the insurance on that property normally. And you’re paying for the taxes normally unless you make a special agreement with the renter. So, out of that paycheck, out of that rent payment you’ve got to pay all these bills. The payment on the loan, the taxes, the insurance, set aside some money for repairs. Or somebody’s going to move out and not tell you and it’s empty for four or five months till you get it re-entered. You better have a good budget there. When you add all that together you might not have, but like 10% of that is actual cash that you’re gaining. I’ve heard people look at rental issues and say, “Wait, I would never do that, you don’t get any money.” No, not upfront. Now I have three homes, that I own 100%. I have delayed gratification. And now 100% of that rent money is mine less taxes and insurance. I’m in a better spot because I understood it’s going to take sometimes years to have fully paid off rental property.

Last but not least. Since I bought this machine shop. I bought this business. I was age 55. Which is not something I would recommend to everyone. I won’t go into numbers on this discussion. But I took a lot of risk. And I borrowed a lot of money for this business. I did it believing that it would pay me back. But not immediately. I’m now in my 11th year. And it took me seven years. Seven years to pay off the big note. The big one that was $24,000 per month. That was just a part of my payments. That was just one payment. I had other payments. But boy did I have a party after seven years when I no more had to pay one loan at $24,000 a month? That was a delay in getting there. I had to understand that. I’ve heard people, probably five times. So, if you hear this and you think I’m talking about you I’m not. I’m talking about least five times someone’s come to me and said, “Gary, I heard you bought a business, could you tell me about it?” And I say, “Okay.” And in most cases, they had something that they said, “Man, it makes $500,000 a year!” That’s why they are so excited. Now they didn’t necessarily understand what’s going to happen. So I felt an obligation to tell them, that you’d better be ready for delayed gratification for about 10 years like I did. You can’t take any extra money. You’d better take a small paycheck, like I did, to make sure this is going to be a success.

Once you get over the hump, once you get your big note paid off, once you get momentum going you can buy that vehicle, you can buy that home, you can pay yourself a little better. Delayed gratification. I hope this helps. I hope you’re listening with an idea that this is going to inspire you.

I’d hope you would share these with others. And again, on delayed gratification, it’s, yeah, I see it all the time. Some people get it, and some people don’t. I hope you enjoyed this. And many blessings.


1 Comment

  1. Jim Furr 5 years ago

    The Bible book of Proverbs tells us that wisdom – principles for living life with excellence – calls aloud to us (1:20). One way this happens is of course through the Bible, God’s written word. According to Proverbs, another way wisdom calls out to us is through nature. For example, Proverbs 6 points out that ants storing up food for winter teach us about the wisdom of long-range planning. In this week’s IBB Talk, Gary uses nature’s planting and harvest cycle to uncover the wisdom of practicing delayed gratification, a principle that is essential for us to follow, as Gary explains, if we are to be successful in business.

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