A large group of 4-year old children are led into a room. Each child is seated and given a marshmallow. "You can eat the marshmallow right now if you want. But if you wait until I come backto eat your marshmallow to go with it." The giver of marshmallows then leaves the children alone in the room. The 4-year old who eats the marhmallow is oriented towards the present.
The 4-year old who waits is oriented towards the future.
Yes, we can learn big things from small indicators.
"At the age of 40 the group that didn't eat their marshmallows had more successful marriage, higher incomes, greater career satisfaction and better health than the marshmallow eaters."
One third of the children ate the marshmallow immediately. One third help out for a short time, then ate the marshmallow. One third waited the 15 - 20 minutes until the giver of marshmallows returned with the promised, second marshmallow.
By Roy Williams, founder and president of The Wizardof Ads