Taming the Willpower

Some people have a very strong willpower. Most want to conquer it but they lose. Can we find a solution to easily tame this monster and work it to our advantage? The answer is yes.

In my opinion, overcoming the willpower is not easy because it is in conflict with a persistent enemy: desire or instant gratification. Even if we successfully keep it at bay for three hours, it can, and often does, still come back and make us follow its command. The only difference, in my opinion, is that the people with strong willpower can resist the temptation for longer than the ordinary persons. But it is still a finite resource and eventually gets spent.

The easiest solution to conquer the desire is to not make it develop in the first place. If you design your outside world such that it is free of that attraction, you will not have fight the battle inside.

For example, if you cannot resist the junk food like cookies or chips, they should not be present in your home and left at the supermarket. No matter how much you like to eat junk food, if it is not there, you cannot have it. Most extramarital affairs start in ordinary situations. To avoid something like that, the environment should have certain boundaries to limit personal level interactions.

Similarly, if you get swept away in the YouTube rabbit hole, you need to use a software like Freedom. According to their website,

  • Studies show that every time you check email, a social feed, or respond to a notification, your mind requires 23 minutes of re-focus time to get back on task. It’s a phenomenal cost to our entire workforce and to each of us individually as we strive to do our best work.
  • While we may feel incredibly productive jumping around putting out a lot of fires, we’re actually 40% less productive when multitasking.
  • Distractions are habit-forming in the long run.

In summary, eliminating the bad choices from the surroundings is the easiest or the most straightforward way to conquer the willpower.

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