Delayed Gratification Depends on Trust

Trust builds confidence. Believe in yourself, be positive, and press your “go” button.

Trust… we all want more of it, but it needs to be earned. Building trust also leads to a greater sense of security, support, belief, and confidence. When we generate positive inferences about others and ourselves, it expands our abilities, relationships, life experiences—and our Money Energy.

The Relationship Between Trust and Delayed Gratification

There’s an interesting connection between trust and believing in the foreseeable future. It’s the difference between acting on immediate rewards versus delayed gratification, which is also a behavioral risk. And you might be asking, how does delayed gratification relate to Money Energy? Here are a few examples:

  • The propensity to save more and borrow less

  • The ability to recognize the future benefit of action based on the present value (cost/benefit analysis)

  • Increasing the probabilities of reaching your retirement plan

  • Recognizing the value associated with the purchase of protection products (i.e. a life insurance policy or an annuity)

  • Staying the course when it comes to your investment strategy

  • Avoiding overspending if it equates to increasing your future debt obligation

Many of these examples also relate to your behavioral style and your ability to delay gratification. But it’s also tethered to trust and the belief that what you can achieve tomorrow is better than what you have today.

It starts with trust in yourself.

When you know yourself and feel comfortable knowing your intrinsic behavioral style, you become more aware of your thoughts, feelings, and emotional drivers—and they all influence your relationship with money as well.

If you are someone who has struggled with self-trust, look back at the influences that shaped your personal identity. Then, consider what mental baggage you might have inherited along the way. Maybe it was a family struggling with money, or perhaps it was a family with an abundance of money and the process of accumulating wealth was unclear to you. In either case, it equates to a lack of financial literacy and self-trust, which influences your level of confidence in your decision-making.

How to Build More Trust in Your Life

Let’s consider the case study of Tuan Nguyen. He’s 32 years old and, along with his older brother, is part of a family-owned real estate business that caters to high-net-worth private investors. Tuan is a big believer in continually learning and he’s dedicated to helping the career development of his real estate agents. While his family came from humble beginnings, he admired his family's passion for real estate investing, and became skilled by watching how his father and brother built a successful business and a better life for the family.

Tuan’s DNA Natural Behavior Discovery revealed that he is a Strategist who is very skeptical and reserved. This manifests in being skeptical about his ability to share opinions, and his quiet contemplation often results in holding back and being more guarded.

Tuan, though bright, is intimidated by the rigid approach and domineering personalities of his father and brother. He often feels uncomfortable and finds it difficult to express himself openly when he is with them. His insecurities and lack of confidence in himself lead him to make decisions that result in instant gratification and acceptance from his father and brother.

This behavior becomes extremely detrimental for the financial well-being of the family, especially when the decision-making relates to investments and new financial opportunities. As one of the investors, he wants and needs to participate in the conversations, but he doesn’t trust himself enough to contribute his thoughts. He has concerns that the financial decisions made by his father and brother are less than optimal and are even potentially harmful to the business and their ability to generate wealth (a goal of improving one’s Money Energy potential).

Fortunately, Tuan was able to recognize his behavioral style and potential weakness as the family business has a subscription to Business DNA. At the same time, he was able to reveal his strengths, too. At a recent family meeting, Tuan again found himself holding back from expressing his views as his father and brother discussed a new deal. But things were different this time. 

Tuan listened to the exchange. In typical fashion, he could feel himself physically withdrawing, however he was more aware of the behavioral risks he creates for himself when his beliefs and rational thinking are contradicted. Determined to make a stand and seeking to avoid the repercussions of acting on impulsive decisions, he was prepared. He laid out his reasons for not supporting the new deal and how waiting for a better deal had a greater opportunity for exponential growth (a result of delayed gratification).

His father and brother were actually very receptive, and Tuan learned that his lack of trust in himself all this time was the only thing holding back better opportunities for the family business. Switching from self-doubt to self-trust was pivotal to increasing their Money Energy.

Now I ask you: Are you creating boundaries for yourself as result of self-doubt? Do you have trouble trusting yourself or others? Ever shy away from providing valuable insights into a decision just to gain instant gratification? It’s okay if you ever felt that way. Overcoming this behavioral risk means having the confidence and courage to seek help.

Related: Revolutionizing the Way We Meet