DELAYING GRATIFICATION

One of the most common themes I’ve seen in prison over the years is this: Guys always abuse rules and especially any leniency in the rules. They abuse it to the point where it gets out of hand, and the officers are forced to do something, such as make a new restrictive rule, cancel something, take a privilege away, etc. It always ends up affecting all of us in a negative way, and then the guys always say: “These cops always take everything from us! It’s not fair!”

The problem is one of delayed gratification, of self-restraint. Most guys in here simply cannot look ahead and restrain their “I want it now!” urges for something better in the future. This goes into saving money, educating themselves, personal relationships, pretty much every aspect of their lives. I know, because I was once a disaster with delaying gratification. But once you learn how to do it, once you exercise some discipline, a lot of cards start to fall into place.

Dan Turner
DOC# 767569

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