We are faced with battling our willpower everyday. As soon as the alarm goes off, you are faced with many choices of will. Do you hit the snooze alarm, do you skip choosing a quick sugar filled breakfast for something healthy, do you skip the double mocha latte with whip and go for the plain coffee, Do you finish following through this major task for work or jump on facebook, and Do you choose to get a chicken salad hold the dressing or get that Turkey club complete with bacon! The list goes on! All day we are battling our will just to make better choices, ones that should be moving us towards our goals, keep us healthy, as well as form to what should be the best decision according to society standards. Does it make you cranky? Sure can! It’s exhausting at times to constantly be fighting temptation. Over and over again, it surely can start to chip away at your willpower and before you know it, BOOM; you’ve given in by allowing your priorities to crash and good choices fly out the window!
But great news is that research as proven that willpower works just like a muscle! Overtrain/work your willpower just like a muscle, it falls into fatigue. But, on the opposite scope of it all, it can be strengthened making you more productive and happier with your choices and results. Below are some habits you can use to help create strength in your willpower and not allow yourself to hit that wall.
1) Write it Down!– Keep a journal that you can keep daily notes and tracking on how you perform or scheduled your day. Whether it’s for weight loss and keeping track of your daily meal plan and exercise to following through on business building techniques for your business. This is a way to track back. So if in times where you start to fall short or hit a wall, you can track back to when things were good and progressing.
2) Don’t Procrastinate! – When you procrastinate on a task or get anxious, research has shown we tend to give into an urge to improve our moods by doing something else. One suggested book to read is Eat That Frog, by Brian Tracy. Suck it up, and get the hardest most daunting task done first!
3) Be on the OFFENSE team! – Many people are successful at making good choices and not constantly battling their will because they put themselves in situations where temptation isn’t even a choice. If you can proactively arrange your day and your life to avoid problems or bad choices in temptation, you will have a much smoother day with sticking to your plan in action. If you are trying to lose weight, plan your meals for the day and don’t fall into the lunchtime crew heading out to the all you can eat buffet! If you are working on habitual for jumping back and forth between email, twitter, and facebook to avoid a work assignment, close those programs or shut the computer down if possible! People who are proactive avoid risk. Just like taking your car in for check up and maintenance.
4) Pick your Battles! – You can’t control every situation or every temptation in front of you. It’s easy to fall into a trap where everything just goes to “pot” because you are stressed out with too many situations, obligations, and tasks! Choose your timing! If you are just starting a new job, trying to lose weight, and trying to quit smoking, maybe lighten up on how strict your efforts are while you take on such a major change in your life. Keep that forward progress but maybe put the breaks or slow down on the pace.
5) Reward yourself often! – People love incentives. Your reward doesn’t always have to be like a kid in a candy store. Making good choices on your rewards can be as simple as doing something you normal don’t have the chance to do, like a massage or pedicure. Or even schedule a babysitter so you can go out for a couple hours and do anything you want. It can even be having a day or meal where you take in some of the most desired treats you have been cutting back.
Success in your goals and achievements is planned. It’s a plan laid out like a blue print. You can’t build a house, unless you have a blue print. Work on creating habits that won’t leave you agitated and fighting with yourself every day. Find a way where it’s reasonable, takes maybe a different pace than you initially wanted, but will lay out a plan for success.