Have a plan

Have a plan

People with high willpower use it to avoid getting themselves into a crisis.

If you can’t prevent temptation, make a plan in advance for what you are going to do instead of succumbing.

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Problem Solving

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Avoid willpower depletion

Building willpower is similar to building muscle. Continually exercising without giving yourself a break is not the best way to increase your strength or performance.

Don't allow yourself to be in a position where you constantly have to exercise self-control. It will eventually deplete your resolve. Allow yourself some recovery time away from temptation.

Imagination can blunt the cravings that erode your self-control.

If you imagine lying on a peaceful beach, your body will respond by relaxing. If you imagine being late for an important meeting, your body will tense in response. Use this to your advantage in building willpower.

You can even use your imagination to keep unwanted thoughts away.

Every time that unwanted thought occupies your mind, consciously think about something pleasant instead.

When people are stressed, they tend to fall back on ingrained habits - regardless if they are helpful or harmful.
Start responding to mild stressors with better choices. The more you strengthen your habits, the more likely they will be there to rescue you when a major stressor comes along.

One step at a time

People give up because they feel overwhelmed by the enormity of the goal they must accomplish.

Break the goal down into manageable pieces and line them up in a sequence that guarantees that you will never put yourself in a state of willpower depletion.

It takes an immense amount of effort to suppress your normal personality, preferences, and behaviors.

Hold true to your own internal goals and desires.

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RELATED IDEAS

  1. Keep your sweets, don't throw them out.
  2. Drink a sugary drink.
  3. Avoid multiple resolutions.
  4. Control your environment.
  5. Use mindfulness and meditation.

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IDEAS

Meditate

Meditation improves your attention, focus, self-awareness, and lower your stress levels.

Meditating for even just a few minutes every day will help you to clear your head while activating the areas of your brain related to decision-making and emotions.

Two other major hindrances to self-control are:

  • Self-criticism: Feeling bad makes it harder to resist temptation because we want to cover our shame and guilt with instant gratification. Instead, be compassionate with yourself, especially when confronted with failure.
  • Temptation: Environmental cues create tempting environments that can trigger your impulses. It is important to reflect before you act.

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