Let us start today’s article with the quote of famous French writer & Politician Victor Hugo; he said, “People do not lack strength; they lack will.” Upon reflecting on his wise words, we can realize when sometimes we think that the work is too difficult, it is not the ability we lack; it is the will to do that task. Self-control helps us say “no” to too much eating, spending too much, video gaming, alcohol consumption & other activities that keep us from our goals. It is something we all wish we had more willpower. Willpower is the drive to defy short-term enticements to meet your long-term goals. Some depict it as a battle between logic & emotions. There are many ways to Improve Your Willpower, and in today’s article, we will discuss that.
Is Will Power Like A Muscle?
Many experts believe that willpower is like a muscle. To some extent, you can build it up over time. On the other hand, you can also overdo it by constantly denying yourself one thing after another. This “willpower reduction” may weaken your ability to resist various temptations. Although your willpower may be exhausted in the short term, it can be strengthened again – just like your muscles when you exercise. According to some researchers, willpower is likely to be greater if you work toward your goals. If you’re making the sacrifice for someone else, it is like a burden on your willpower.
Ways To Strengthen Your Willpower
1. Set Small Goals
Try setting small, more manageable goals & improve your willpower to achieve those. If someone’s first goal is to cut back on snacks, they can lessen their portions at meals & can drink plenty of water a day. If they lose a significant amount of weight with those steps, it can give them more willpower to achieve new goals. This is just an example. Break down your goal into smaller ones & treat them as steps of the ladder that will eventually lead you to the bigger goal.
2. Make Plans Ahead
Give your willpower a rest by making decisions in advance. Schedule your upcoming tasks for the entire week and even get some of them done in advance. This will help you to avoid rushing & doing things at the last minute. Before you go to a meeting or conference, decide what you will present & how you will do it. Don’t try to do things in the eleventh hour. As an alternative, schedule it on your calendar at the beginning of each week or plan with a friend to put more effort into keeping that commitment.
3. Set Reasonable Deadlines
To improve your willpower, you need to set deadlines for yourself. No one can perform well without a schedule. Set deadlines that you can practically achieve & stick to them. If you want to start exercising five days a week & you at present do not work out at all, you will exhaust yourself in a week if you try to go straight to your goal. Instead of that, set a schedule. Decide to work out two days each week for a week, then move that up to three days, then four days, & then five. Keep a record of your successes. Bring a bigger calendar you can display on the fridge or wall. Write tiny notes about your success on those days on the calendar. In the future, these notes will motivate you to push your limits.
4. Be More Aware About Your Instinctive Decisions
An exercise is simply being more mindful of your automated daily decisions. We often get so lost in our thought that our actions become instinctive. Taking time to think about why you are making your day-to-day decisions can increase your ability to focus & resist temptations.
For starters, try to catch yourself in some automatic behavior & ask yourself why you are doing it. You might ask yourself why you lit that cigarette or put two sugar cubes in your coffee. Any way you think intentionally about a typical automatic behavior can increase your focus & self-control. Try this behavior-changing program, which can help you to reprogram some of your intuitive decisions.
5. Manage Negative Thoughts
Negative thoughts will unavoidably pop up anytime. You may face one setback to mean you can never change, or you may hear a voice in your head constantly telling you that you won’t succeed, putting your spirits down. If you want to increase willpower, negativity does not help, as it makes you feel beaten & hopeless. While it’s impossible to shut down negative thoughts entirely, you can change how you react to them or manage them. Note down your negative thoughts.
Journaling is helpful in many ways, & one thing you can do is write the negative thoughts that happen throughout the day. Soon you will be capable of recognizing any patterns in the negative messages & begin to explore their roots. When you recognize a negative thought, like “I am not able to achieve my goals,” question whether or not it is true, do this by looking at actual data, not just what your negative mind tells you.
You can make two columns in your diary, one with evidence “for” the belief and one “against.” Write the negative thoughts that come to your mind in the ‘for’ column & write the facts you have gathered in the ‘against’ column. You will find out the ‘against’ column is quite elaborate than the ‘for’ column.
6. Try Meditation
Meditation will give you the best results in Improve Your Willpower. By meditating, you are preparing the brain to focus & resist the urge to wander. Many kinds of research proved that after just 2-3 days of practicing meditation for 10 minutes, your brain will be able to concentrate better, you will have more energy & you will be less stressed. To get started with 10 minutes of mindfulness, you can consult with experts or try some online tutorials.
7. Reward Yourself
If you reach a milestone, celebrate with something that will not affect you. Take a walk in the park after attending a hard meeting. Buy new clothes after losing some weight. Go for a movie or concert after finishing a tedious project work. Rewarding yourself is like a pat on your own back after completing a challenging task. It will encourage you to go ahead & do more.
8. Avoid Enticements
Don’t buy foods you know you can’t defy. If you’re trying to stop drinking alcohol, keep away from events where drinking is the main activity. If your willpower is being tested, try to postpone what you desire until later or divert yourself with something else that won’t keep you from your goals.
Willpower is essential to complete many demanding tasks. Willpower is significant if you want to lose weight, quit smoking, or achieve definite career goals. There are ways you can work to improve your willpower over time. Set goals for yourself, have follow-ups & make lifestyle changes to strengthen your flexibility. On average, creating a habit can take sixty-six days. That’s a long time to persist & form a behavior. Without willpower, it can be a struggle to maintain your habits until they become habitual. It needs intentional action & continued effort.