Being able to truly love ourselves involves delaying gratification.
This can be best explained by the experiment conducted with children aged 4 to 6 at Stanford University in 1972. They were offered marshmallows on a condition. Those children who would eat it right now, would get only one. Those who would chose to eat 30 minutes later would get two. Those who would choose to eat after an hour would get three.
Majority of the children chose to eat now. A little less opted for half an hour wait and further less number of children opted to wait for a full hour.
Years later studying the careers of the children, was discovered that those who were able to delay or defer the gratification had achieved a significantly higher level of success in their career.
Delaying gratification would thus mean postponing instant relief and joy for a much higher cause.