Don’t Eat the Marshmallow!


I remember eating pizza one night as a kid while working at a gas station when an old grumpy mechanic who was passing through the showroom stopped in front of me and growled, “How many times do I have to tell you that if it taste good, then don’t eat it because it’s bad for you!”

Well, I’m not going to ask you to never eat anything that taste good. But, I am going to ask you to not eat the marshmallow…

Why the marshmallow? Well, many years ago some researchers did a study on a group of young kids. They told the kids that the adults had to leave the room. They also told the kids to eat a marshmallow if they wanted. However, if the kids could manage to wait until the adults returned then the kids would be able to eat two marshmallows instead of just one.

Well, as you can imagine, some of the kids didn’t have the will power, or emotional intelligence to pass up the instant gratification of one marshmallow right now for the bigger prize of two marshmallows later. Some immediately dove in. Some waited a little bit, but then they too passed up the bigger prize later for the single marshmallow now. Eventually, the adults returned and gave the few who did wait the larger prize of two marshmallows.

Now here is where it gets really interesting. The researchers followed up with the same kids twenty years later. And the children that had previously passed up the single marshmallow for the bigger prize of two marshmallows scored higher in every category of success and happiness than those children that hadn’t waited! Imagine that… Predicting one’s future success and happiness from a simple marshmallow test…


  1. What success and leadership principles can you identify in this newsletter?
  2. What will you do over the next week to implement one of these success and leadership principles?

dan blanchard award winning author, speaker and teacher

Dan has been busy. He just put out an audiobook of, “The Storm” is working on it’s sequel along with a couple of educational and parenting books. He has had some radio and television interview on Granddaddy’s Secrets for Veterans and national educational issues. Finally, Dan is now trading emails with Hollywood producers on making, “The Storm” into a movie.


the storm


Check out this great article on this amazing teen Jared Palmgren: