I stumbled across a three-year-old article from The New Yorker that is an entertaining read about the "marshmallow study" -- the one in which four-year-old children were tested, about 35 years ago, to see if they would choose one marshmallow NOW or be given two as a reward for waiting a few minutes. The point of the test was to examine the successful children's self-control strategies, but even more interesting results came many years later, when researchers followed up on the now-grown children and found that the self-control they exhibited as preschoolers strongly predicted markers of success as older children and adults.
Here is the link to the article: http://www.newyorker.com/reporting/2009/05/18/090518fa_fact_lehrer?currentPage=all
I recently revisited the book Willpower, which I have written about before in a sort of piecemeal fashion, and am working on a post summarizing the, I don't know, tips that you might get out of it for extending self-control. Will follow up later, but for now, enjoy the marshmallow article.
Previous posts on the book Willpower:
Review part 1: http://arlinghaus.typepad.com/blog/2012/01/book-review-willpower-rediscovering-the-greatest-human-strength.html
Review part 2: http://arlinghaus.typepad.com/blog/2012/01/book-review-part-2-glucose-and-willpower.html