Seeking Shortcuts - Sara Quiriconi | Live Free Warrior | #livefree
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Seeking Shortcuts

Delayed gratification has been a hot topic in my orbit as of late. I wrote a newsletter for my husband’s business on this subject, various quotes popping up on my IG feed, YouTube video suggestions and in passing conversations. Chock it up to the algorithm of life, perhaps.

I’ll be the first to admit, I’m not perfect in this department, so anything I say here in this post isn’t authoritative, self righteous or grandiose. I’ve cut corners when driving for speed, landed an art director job in advertising with a minor (not a major) in graphic design, and cut out a series from chemotherapy in order to maintain some level of health and sanity.

Perhaps some of those examples were from self preservation and talent. There are most likely a few other arenas where I’ve taken a shorter route to avoid some of the longer wait period, where the onslaught of self-doubtful thoughts implode into my mind. For example, if given the opportunity to fast track my acting career to have a lead role in a Christopher Nolan film tomorrow, would I take it? You better f*king believe it. Would I be as ready and prepared if that moment came in a year, two years, maybe five years? Probably not. Doesn’t mean one time is better than the other; however, one may have me more experienced, confident and enjoying the opportunity more than the other. Why?

Delayed gratification.


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It’s the minds way of acknowledging sweat equity put into an effort. It’s time, it’s strategy, it’s hard work, it’s action without seeing the short-term gains, it’s trusting and believing when the motivation is zero and the determination and habit take over.

My husband and I recently took an overnight trip to the Edition Hotel in West Hollywood. We titled it a staycation for valentine’s (neither of us is a really big fan, nor eat chocolate and I despise roses) at one of our favorite hotel chains. It was down the street, about 32 minutes away with no traffic and we got a complimentary upgrade that gave us an incredible sunrise view of downtown Los Angeles and the hills. Magic.

Plus, it gave us the extra loyalty points needed to secure the status level for American Airlines to keep us in the same tier for upgrades, lounge access and other bonus treatments. I’m not a snob about much, but I do value my airline status and seat selections. Rather than give the money to American for status, why not enjoy a night at a luxury level hotel with a rooftop pool overlooking West Hollywood? Win, win.

Was it a cheat for points, instead of delayed gratification? Or, was it being smart about money? All perspective, depends on your values. Perhaps the more important question(s) to ask is (are):

  • what’s the need for the action being taken?
  • is there a downside to the choice being made?
  • what’s the worst case scenario?
  • what’s the best case scenario?
  • can you afford to lose IT (the need) and what’s at stake?
  • are you trying to prove anything to anyone on the outside, especially to those of a higher status than you?
  • does this decision void your core values in any way?


The last one hits home the most for me. I’m a person who REALLY values at my core integrity. If I say something, I’m doing it. I’m going to follow through with it. There’s no questioning, doubting, having to remind me or second mentioning (unless it’s pre-coffee, no promises there). My word is my word, and that’s what I give. I’m a truth teller, whether you like it or not, if it hurts or if it eventually heals. For those in my close circle, you know if you ask me a question, you are prepared for the answered, whether it’s what you want to hear or not. If I say nothing, that’s an answer too (hint: it always is, no matter the person).

If I tell you I meditate for 10 minutes in the morning, you damn well better believe I’m doing it. If I tell you I’m going to apply for an acting role and have an audition done by end of day, it’s done (my agents know this). If I tell you I like the look of your blue sweater and a popped collar, I mean it. If I say your kid has a sweet voice for voiceover work, it’s from heart.

I’m not a mean person. I am truthful. Have a lied in a situation before to not hurt someone’s feelings? Maybe, but most likely I’ll preface with an honest joke or answer to attempt to divert, at the least.

What does truth telling and core values have to do with delayed gratification? It relates to your character. Do you hold truth to your values, do you truly believe in yourself, and do you value the commitment to your SELF that you will follow through with something for the long-term grand finale prize, opposed to the short-term shiny ball?

Like the market, you invest for the long-term wins riding the ups and downs. Avoid the emotional ties to objectives and be able to ride out the movements of the winds with the strategy of sticking to a plan, trusting and believing and keeping the visual and focus clear of where you’re going. Your delayed gratifying WIN will be only that much sweeter.

So many metaphors I could tie to this subject line, but I’ll leave you with that one. Ok, one more:

Stop picking at the seeds to see if they’re growing and trust that the watering of focus, the soil of knowledge and the sun of determination are growing you a massive walnut tree that will be beyond your greatest imagination of enjoyment with the right time coming.
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