On Hard Work and Delaying Gratification

P.S. It's long but worthwhile. :D

Are you guys familiar with Walter Mischel and company's STANFORD MARSHMALLOW EXPERIMENT, a popular behavioral test that was conducted sometime in 1970? To those who aren't, in a nutshell, it goes something like this:

Photo Credits: european-americanblog.blogspot.com

A group of preschoolers were led into a room with plates of treats such as marshmallows, cookies, and pretzels placed atop a table. The experimenter had instructed the kids to wait for 15 minutes before they eat the marshmallow designated to them. Those who will abide will get a second treat when the experimenter comes back to the room. The experimenter then left the room, and little did the children know that they were being observed. In as little as six minutes, a majority of the children had eaten the marshmallows, while a few had patiently waited for the experimenter to return. Later on, Mischel and his group had followed up the participants of the experiment and they have found out that those who did not eat the marshmallow turned out to be the more successful ones as opposed to those who did.

The experiment suggested that there is a correlation between delayed gratification and success-those who are willing to push aside little rewards for bigger ones are more likely to succeed in life.

Photo Credits: torontosun.com

A lot of Filipinos cannot resist the marshmallow. (Don't deny it. It's true) Tommanny Tan, CEO and Founder of Fern Group of Companies said that there are two things that impede the financial success of many Filipinos:

- Filipinos love spending their hard- earned money all at once, and would always use the petty excuse that they could always save up in the future. This is very much true because I have been one myself, and there are friends of mine who are loud and proud one day millionaires. Much worse, there are those who allot their salary for material pleasures.

- I let out a loud laugh when I heard this because I immediately recalled all my insignificant hauls that I'd like to call, a waste of time and money. Again, this is very much true because most Pinoys are impatient: They settle for little rewards because it's easier to acquire, don't even require a tiny sacrifice, or don't demand them to move away from their comfort zone, whereas bigger rewards take longer to achieve and require bigger sacrifices and risks. In short, most of us love mediocrity. Blame it on the "Simpleng Buhay" mentality that is prevalent amongst Filipinos.

In relation to # 1, there is another kind of impediment I had observed, and that is most Filipinos are advanced millionaires: They rely on their credit cards, loan from banks, and borrow money from the rich just to sustain their lifestyles or buy their rewards at the very least. In the end, they spend a better part of their lives working to pay off debts and what's even worse is, they pass on their debts to their children!

So here's my Marshmallow experience: I had developed a passionate love for this Furla Candy Bauletto bag-I really worked hard for it but in the end, I was flat broke on my arse because I had only worked just so I could buy it. I was very happy because I got the bag, but very sad because I was broke and didn't know where to get money. I've realized that happiness is not about having the things you want the most, but having them without the guilt and worry. This bag is a blessing after all because whenever I see it, I am always reminded that being in financial limbo is one of the most terrible situations in life, and I should never get into that experience ever again. :p

I guess I was the first kid who ate the marshmallow. But hey, the beauty of being a Human Being is that we have the capacity and intelligence to change. I believe that behavioral tests such as the Marshmallow Experiment DOES NOT determine our destiny--it's merely a checkpoint so we'd know how to plan our lives for the better.

I used to indulge in tiny rewards- I loved shopping every time I get my honorarium. Most of my purchases are not at all cheap but to be honest, in terms of value, they are not that significant. They're so common that they do not remind me of a single valuable lesson, apart from the nice feeling I got when I've purchased them. Then one day, I told myself that I've had enough of this mediocre life because it felt like it was leading to nowhere so I've put my foot down and declared that I will push myself to the limit.

2012 was my financial planning year--the year where I have set a Financial Goal for myself and decided to practice Deferred Gratification. Incidentally, it was my most financially blessed year but you know what? I don't remember myself indulging in shopping sprees--not even once. I didn't even take advantage of sales. Whenever I had to purchase something, I made sure it was essential and necessary. I've had major successes last year, but I have never thought of rewarding myself with little stuff like shoes, clothes, accessories, perfume, or makeup--just a simple restaurant treat and if I remember it correctly, I only splurged on restos for about 5 to 8 times last 2012. My only priority was my everyday expenses such as normal food and transportation--nothing else.

It's easy for you to think that I had beaten myself up for being too frugal but nope, I don't think of it that way. It just required me to shift my consciousness-to take delight in and look forward to the bigger promises of the future while I go through Annica. (the Impermanence which I always attribute to sacrifices) But I have to admit it wasn't easy-besides, nobody said it was! There were a lot of times wherein I was tempted to give up on my promises but I held on and pushed through.

 But I'm still human, and I also needed a reward to push myself further this 2013. I'm not a masochist! LOL! I've promised myself last year that once I hit my financial goal, I will buy one of my ultimate dream items. And in the succeeding months and years, I will only focus on my dreams and won't let little rewards divert my focus from my real goals. But if I don't hit my financial goal, then no reward for me-It's that simple. :) This condition has actually forced me to speed up! And to cut this blabber short, I've hit my financial goal (and exceeded it by 15%) and just as planned, I have bought my reward last December 28 to cap off my wonderful 2012. My, I never knew Deferred Gratification could be this lovely! :D

So what is inside the Prada paper bag? You will know when you click READ MORE. Off topic: I will also tell you where you can score the CHEAPEST place to get authentic luxury handbags and leathergoods online. :)

 TADAH! It's a brand new Prada Tessuto Gaufre' BN1789M in Nero-I am proud to say that every single centavo that was spent on this bag came from my pocket!

I fell in love with this bag two years ago and finally, I have one. For me, there's really no better way for a woman to reward herself after a successful feat but with a luxury arm candy. (I'm biased, I know-Because I just love handbags!) Actually, I had my eyes fixed on the BN1336 style but unfortunately, Prada had discontinued the first Gaufre' styles and started replacing them at the latter part of 2012. This style replaces BN1792.

 And no ma, this is not another Furla Candy Bauletto moment. This bag was in mind, but it was never a priority. That's why I almost delayed my purchase because I thought I won't be able to hit my 2012 financial goal. Well, God always finds ways for you indeed. :)

Going back to the bag, I wanted a functional, timeless, and useful bag: One that can look good with almost anything, can accommodate a lot of stuff, and become classy and laid-back with just a little tweak-and I thought that this bag is just perfect.

I also got myself The Leather Satchel & Co.'s Tallboy in Loch Blue. It's a little lighter than Cambridge Satchel's satchels. I love the vintage blue color, and it makes a great laptop/document bag!

Back to the Prada bag: Whenever I see this bag, I always feel blessed, thankful, and above all, it has inspired me to reach even greater heights. Also, it reminds me that there is nothing impossible if you have the heart of a winner and the willingness to work hard. (and smart!) :D

So if you've been eating the first Marshmallow in sight for the longest time, just always bear in mind that you always have the choice to push the plate away from you. Well in the end, it's always your choice. So the next time life offers you a piece of marshmallow and promises you a New York Cheesecake as a reward if you don't eat it, I hope you know what to do. :) 

So where did I get my bag?

I got my bag from Ms. Cynthia Bumstead, the owner of Shop a Bag!, a Facebook boutique that carries 100% authentic luxury brands such as Chanel, Louis Vuitton, Hermes, Lanvin, YSL, Bottega Veneta, Celine, Balenciaga, Givenchy, Furla, Lanvin, and Prada. She also distributes The Leather Satchel and Co. bags. I did a lot of canvassing for the Gaufre' and by far, Ms. Cynthia still offers the CHEAPEST prices online for brand new and pre- owned luxury handbags and leathergoods. Shop a Bag! sources bags from authorized retailers in Europe, and tries to be at par with the Euro pricing. They have on-hand stuff all the time, and they can also pre- order the specific bag you want.

I would also like to laud her professional customer service: She replies to SMS messages promptly, is polite in answering even the most insignificant queries, (lol. I had a lot of those!) and most of all, she's willing to do a meet up! I'd also like to thank you, Ms. Cynthia, if ever you are reading this, for agreeing to meet up with me despite the short notice. And thanks a lot to your nice and accommodating husband, John. :)

Here are some of the arm (and eye) candies she's carrying:

By the way, this Rose Thulian Balenciaga Classic City is my 2013 reward. So help me God. :)

To the bag hags out there, you now know where you can score cheaper luxury hand bags. Please visit SHOP A BAG! on Facebook to view Ms. Cynthia's entire listing.

I hope you have enjoyed this post. Have a happy Friday, and STAY INSPIRED! :)

Share this:


Beauty. Fitness. Fashion. Food. Travel. Unicorns. World Peace. Digify Corporation.

29 Lovely Thoughts

  1. I like that style of Prada bag too! Saving up for an H, hehe.

  2. This is a truly great read. And I think everyone should READ this. Enjoy the bag! You truly deserve it :)

  3. Definitely a luxury-arm-candy! Love your Prada Bag sweetie!


  4. Our Church also featured that Marshmallow Experiment early last year and indeed delaying gratification most of the time always leads to satisfaction and contentment. It's good to know that the marshmallow experiment doesn't only apply to spiritual concept but with financial issues as well. I used to suffer financially because of vanity way back 2011 naman. Good thing I was able to twist my fate and started saving up for my long time dream of having my own condo unit. It's worth every centavo, though it's not that posh but at least in a few years time I'll reap what I've sown. Thumbs up for this post.

  5. thanks for inspiring us Ms. Martha! Happy New Year!

  6. my oh my..think been eating marshmallow the entire 2012!!! glad you shared these thoughts as early as the 4th of january...very timely indeed :-) (off to do my checklist on how to get my piece of "cheesecake") keep on bloggin' ms martha! god bless :-)

  7. I loved this post, it's so inspiring. Made me want to delay eating my marshmallow starting 2013! I hope I could hit my financial goals, too. :)

  8. Embarrassing but I admit, I didn't have a financial goal. You inspire me again to have one. Thumbs up to you and may you continue to inspire your readers like me to do better. :)

  9. im number 2~! gosh ewan ko ba i cant resist! but from now on i will set my goal, you inspire me martha to SAVE.
    and to just to reward myself bigtime in the end and its my birthday, so its a win-win!

    ill definitely try to have self control :)

  10. this is very inspiring martha :) I admit I was one of the first to eat the marshmallow also, and with this, you inspired me to change! I am looking forward to achieving a financial goal this 2013 as well. You say it best, "happiness is not about having the things you want the most, but having them without the guilt and worry". And that's a very beautiful and classic Prada :)

  11. I felt guilty after reading this hehe! Coz I'm really one of those characteristics that most Filipinos possess.. Taking advantage of sales, using credit cards and sometimes (really) I do borrow money just to get the things I saw in mall. (Because I can't sleep without getting it) ;D but then I realized your point Ms. Martha.. It's so long for me to post here but I wanna thank you for telling us all of this. 2013 will be my financial planning year. :))) love it! <3

    And oh, congrats to your new baby! You deserved it as always.. :)

  12. awww congratulations to you! its hard to delay that gratification especially if ure surrounded by materail consumerism talaga! i stil wont buy a bag as exepensive as that pero to each his own. i was loaned an lv bag 2 years ago and i stained it with ink from a en que horror! so high end brands really arent for me.
    ive had d same experience last year wherein i did nt have money to spend during christmas for a new outfit. i decided to bling up my nails instead pf hitting the malls.
    i am praying dat ul b able to get dat balenciaga bag. its nice and if u do pls do a post.

  13. Rowena: Thanks! Bongga! I'll buy my H when I'm 30. :)

    Epol Apol: Thank you! :)

    Eloise: True! But in the end, it's always your choice. Yes, will write about the Balenciaga bag when I get it. :)

    Sincere: thank you for sharing! :) Good luck this 2013 :)

    Aira: Hi there! You can do it! :) Thanks for dropping by. :)

    Cilay: Hi and welcome to TBJ! So glad you liked this post. :) I pray that you hit your financial goal this year :)

    Jenny: That's a great start! Delayed Gratification always works! :D

    Helen: Thanks dear! I'm sure you can, but only if you choose to. :)

    Onlinegarden: Hi there! Nice reply! :) Yes, go grab that cheesecake! This 2013, I'm going for a chocolate fountain. LOL! :D

    Kriselle: You're welcome. Happy New Year! :D

    Yanny: Wow! I'll start saving up for my own condo unit this year too. :) We can do this! Good luck! :D

    Carmis: Thank you very much! :)

    Cintamuni: Thank you! Happy New Year! :D

  14. this is one of the best blogpost that inspires me to start my year right! :)

  15. This is by far my most favorite TBJ post!!! I'm so inspires right now. I am so happy for you for not eating the marshmallow too soon. Now you're indulging a sweeter treat! Good luck on your 2013 goal, Martha! :)

  16. Ms. Martha how much is that furla candy bag? It really is an eye candy. If 2013 would be great, i'll be buying one :)

  17. This is a VERY inspiring post, Ms. Martha! I admit that I am one of those who cannot resist the marshmallow, one day millionaire and loves little rewards. :( I am a shopaholic. I abuse my credit cards and take advantage of sales and deals. But this made me realize that I really should start saving and have a financial goal this year. I will do my best to control myself from buying little rewards. I will keep this formula in mind: Income - Savings = Expense
    Thank you so much for sharing this. Congrats for achieving your 2012 goal and for your reward. You deserve all the blessings. Thank you for always inspiring us. .^_^.

  18. This is an eye opener! The deferred gratification concept always comes to mind when I'm about to procrastinate on the things that I need to do, but I've never thought of applying it on my finances. I'll be emulating what you've done last year this 2013. :)

  19. Thank you so much for this article! I am one of those 1 day millionaires and I still regret a bit the day I cleared out my bank account for a Prada phone. I love the phone but I still think of the money I spent. Anyway, thank you so much and BTW, I think I saw you during BU4. Were you the one selling the Aranaz clutch? :)

  20. Read this article twice actually. Saw that experiment on discovery channel way back pero I didn't know applicable din sya sa mga beauty/fashion purchases or financial matters in general. Great timing! For the past couple of months, I've been spending most of my allowance on makeup that I don't really need. I guess 2012 was my "eat all u can" marshmallow year. 2013 will be for my cheesecake. Thank you, Ms. Martha! You never fail to inspire me. :)

  21. that's great Ms. Martha, atleast I knew di lang pala ako in savings pagdating sa bag-i'm a shoeholic, but I'l do save narin for the future.:)
    thanks for reminding us:)

  22. Gerilen: Thank you and may the force be with you! :D

    Ohms: Glad to know you were inspired by this post. :)

    Celline: Aww..Thank you so much! Good luck on your cheesecake! :D

    Maria: Hi there and welcome to TBJ! Thank you for sharing your experience and glad to know this post has moved you. Yes, that was me. :)

    Jas: Thank you and good luck! :D

    Prettyfly: Hi there! The basic ones retail at P13,000 in Shop a Bag!, while the ones with funkier styles retail at P15k and up. In greenbelt, the basic style is at 16k. You can get it cheaper at Shop a Bag! Good luck on your goal this 2013-I believe you can do it!

  23. I love this post Ms. M! It's long but worth reading. Ako naman pag may pera ako, I don't spend it for myself. I give it to mama for our sari-sari store capital and I left a hundred or two for my baon at school. Sometimes, I can't resist on buying something which I thought, at first, I will really need. Then later on, regrets will follow. Sana binigay ko nalang ung perang un ke mama or else, Sana pinangbaon ko nalang un. But nevertheless, I still value what I spent on materials things because it's my investment, especially cosmetics. As a struggling freelance makeup artist is such a boo. But instead up sitting at the corner, doing nothing, I will just work hard, find lots of client for my 'investment' to expand. You're truly an inspiration Ms. M. I never regret typing thebeautyjunkee.blogspot.com in my address bar ♥ GOD BLESS US ALL!

  24. Just inspired me to save up and set a financial go for 2013! :) Great post, Martha! Will share with friends who are not fond of delayed gratification :))

  25. This post makes me realized that I should set my own financial goal this year. And trully, delayed gratification are more meaningful than giving-in to impulse buys and wants. Thanks for sharing this Ms. Martha :) It really inspired me :)

  26. Bea, Orlaine, and Desire: Thank you girls! :D

  27. Congrats Martha on your new bag and I ditto. I love this post, I'm also on a financial phase this 2013 and this has been an inspiration. Continue to inspire Martha ♥

    Beauty Colada

  28. The start of the year has been bad for me and in a way i just wanted to go with the flow and be mediocre.LOL. all im saying is, thank you for this inspiring post. :)


Thank you for your comments!