How can I strengthen my willpower?

Do you know how willpower works?

Once you do, you will master and learn how to take full advantage of it so you can devote your energy for what is most important to you.

Here are 2 important things to know:

  • We have only a finite amount of willpower.
  • We tap into the same source of willpower every day to do ALL tasks.

This is how it impacts you every day:

  • Willpower affects your decision-making.
  • You have to make a decision on every little thing you’re doing during the day: which food to have for breakfast, which shoes and socks to wear, when to run an errand, how to research a topic for work, how much time to devote to studying, what to have for dinner.
  • The more decisions you have to make, the more exhausted you get, and the less energy you have left for doing everything you’ve set out to do.

This is what you should not do:

Don’t waste most of your willpower early in the day by focusing on making decisions related to things that are irrelevant to your personal goals, such as:

  • checking your social media feed
  • checking all of your emails
  • making phone calls
  • watching TV
  • listening to the news
  • browsing the Internet
  • doing household tasks

This is what you can do instead:

Do these 4 things to tap into your willpower and focus on what’s important FIRST.

  • Ask yourself one small yet powerful question first thing in the morning: What is the ONE THING I am committed to completing today? There are many benefits to this technique: it keeps things simple, helps your brain focus better, makes you prioritize your goals, and streamlines the work you need to do on that particular day so you don’t feel overwhelmed with making too many choices. Here’s how:
    • Put it in writing; write it in big bold letters on a sheet of paper and hang it on your bedroom or bathroom wall.
    • Read it out loud as you start each day, and come up with an answer on the spot. Then, devote your time to completing what’s most important to you for that day.
  • Create a morning routine so you can work out early. A morning routine is a simple life hack that makes you feel super productive at the start of the day, gives you focus, and provides you with a sense of achievement early, so that you already feel you’ve made progress. By developing your personal morning rituals you will always know how to start your day, what you need to focus on first, and what will get you closer to achieving your goals.
  • Choose a short and targeted workout. What’s the best way to build a fitness habit from scratch? Make it less intimidating and more easy to do on a regular basis. For example, instead of aiming too high at the very beginning by telling yourself you must spend two hours at the gym, opt for taking baby steps and aim for 15-30 minutes. Pick a shorter activity such as:
  • Start your day with an energy-boosting breakfast. It’s your fuel for starting the day and it helps you to feel alert, energized, and motivated. Choose something that is balanced, light, yet filling, such as a combination of protein, healthy fats, fresh fruit. For example:
    • Overnight oats (no cooking needed): mix a few spoonfuls of oats, 1 teaspoon each of chia seeds and flax seeds, some walnuts, almonds, raisins; add a bit of almond milk or water to blend; leave in fridge overnight and top it off in the morning with some fresh fruit.
    • A parfait: Layer 1/2 cup of yogurt, 1 tablespoon granola, 1 cup fresh fruit (sliced or diced), and a spoonful of nuts such as walnuts and almonds.
    • Oatmeal with chia seeds, flax seeds, walnuts, almonds, dates, shredded coconut, raisins or cranberries; blend with a spoon of peanut butter and add fresh fruit on top.
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One thought on “How can I strengthen my willpower?

  1. Believe it or not – I have found my greatest source of willpower is when someone tells me that I cannot do something! I hate the word “CANNOT DO” – well, this is my cue to set out and accomplish this goal. A few years ago, I wanted to get a Bachelor’s Degree in Criminal Justice and my “whole family” said – How are you going to make it when you made Bs, Cs, and – yes – the occasional “D” in academic courses. Well, I got enrolled – I started the degree – I craved more and more for knowledge – and I completed college graduating “Summa Cum Laude!” No one else in my family has a “college degree.” What I believe is – you yourself are your only barrier to becoming what you want to be in life. If you have the willpower – like I did – to want something so badly – then your mind will take over your body and you can do it. I absolutely loved every single minute of getting my degree!!!!

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