Let’s converse about immediate gratification and long-term goals. Sometimes what I want today, I put off until tomorrow. This has led me to realize that the reason I do this is because at times I prefer to let oscillating phases follow through until stability is reached and then jump into the water at that time.
You may be an acquaintance to me today, and we may wish to be friends in the present, however, I decide that you are much like an unstable atom and block the friendship from coming into fruition. Why would anyone ever do this? It is because of the instability. Sure, immediate gratification is nice, but why bother when there is a peak in the curve and it does not approach the limit in the near values? Think of a rollercoaster reaching its top, does it not create that feeling of anxiety upon coming down?
I rather there be a function approaching a limit, that way the utility is not ephemeral like that of a book that you read today and will never look at again tomorrow. I want to be able to develop the maturity to read that book and maintain an idea of the ideas than to let the dust accumulate not only on the shelf, but in my mind as well.
Of course there is an issue with this; the issue is that sometimes when you wait for that stability to be reached it is reached, but not in a form from which you are able to enjoy. In that case it was a bold effort on your part and it’s fine to say “too bad; next page.” On the other hand, if you are able to attain the stability, then you can enjoy the individual parts more for an elongated period of time. Let’s not forget that what goes up must come down. Think of it as a very wide, maximum, curve of utility– a curve in which you can hardly distinguish from a straight line if looked at on a graph due to the elongated length. You have earned the opportunity to get the most out of the situation all through a thorough assesment of the long-term goals and what the probability of the outcome you desire is.