How many of your problems would be solved if you just had more willpower? You’d have the body of your dreams, you’d finish that project you’ve been putting off for years, you’d spend far less time watching cat videos. Willpower is the most essential tool there is in achieving any of our goals
Here, Art of Manliness bings us some tips for strengthening our willpower. Like most things, willpower is a tool that is strengthened by using it. So get ready to put he ice-cream back in the freezer.
While there are many ways to conserve your willpower, there’s really just one way to strengthen it.
By working on any goal or habit that exercises your self-control.
Remember when we talked about how willpower is like a muscle, and that just like a muscle, you have to exhaust it in the short-term in order to build its strength in the long-term? When you work to change a habit, you deplete your willpower in the struggle, but over time, the strength of your willpower muscle increases from these exercises, making you better able to take on future tasks.
Wouldn’t it be nice if your brain was more willing to work with you? You know what you should be doing, you know the reasons why you shouldn’t sit around all day eating ice cream and watching cat videos on Youtube, but when it comes down to it, which one sounds more appealing?
It turns out that the problem isn’t just on our heads, but in our environment. as Freedom In Thought explains:
Self discipline is much more of an environmental issue that it is an individual one. While an individual can change their beliefs and behaviour through education, the resources available for education are presented by the environment. Furthermore, the habits an individual builds to meet their desires are, in large part, a product of what’s available in the environment.
At a basic level, this is the logic behind removing ice cream and cakes from your house if you’re trying to lose weight, or turning g off your phone if you want to concentrate on your work. Willpower is important, and we can all do with building our reserves of it, but it never hurts to manipulate our environment into boosting our chances of sticking to our goals.