5 hacks to strengthen your willpower.
Author: Adam Macdougall
Date Posted:18 March 2019
At some point in all our lives, we have ALL had problems with our will power or self-control. Whether it's the food we said we wouldn't eat or the thing we were supposed to do but just couldn't will yourself enough to do it.
The truth is we are not weak-willed or greedy pigs it's because our brains are wired to eat anything and everything that is put in front of us. Why? Because that’s how our ancestors survived and thrived back in the caveman days.
The problem today is we don’t have to work hard to find food we can simply sit on our backsides and go through a drive-thru and consume enough calories for 10 men in 1 meal.
So how do we hack our primal urges to eat better and stop our hands from taking one more handful of chips?
The key is to create an environment that protects us from ourselves.
We do that by reducing decisions we have to make in a day as research has shown that the more decisions we have to make the more tired our brains become and the greater the likely hood of us making poor food choices to feed our tired hungry brains.
This is why 3 of the most successful men in modern times Obama, Mark Zuckerberg (Facebook Founder) and Steve jobs all have 2 things in common. This was wearing largely the same clothes every day and eating the same high protein breakfast. They did this so they did not waste any brain power on trivial decisions early in the day and ensure they protected themselves from poor food choices Later in the day.
So it's all about creating a routine in your daily life. The more decisions you have to make early in the morning will wear down your willpower to make better decisions later in the day, it's called "decision fatigue".
We have put together 5 sure-fire ways to strengthen your willpower and help you make it through the day.
1. Feed our brains with regular, protein-rich meals
Our brain is our decision making muscle and its ability to provide us with the necessary willpower to make correct decisions is influenced by whether it is sufficiently fed. So we should eat regular meals especially breakfast with high proteins like The Man Shake or eggs and avocado.
2. Remove Temptation
Willpower is a limited resource – so don’t waste it. Every time you need to tell yourself “no” to temptation in front of you, you slowly deplete your willpower – and it takes time to replenish.
So whenever possible: remove the temptations from your life. As an example, If you know you will eat junk food if it is in the house – then don't buy it in the first place. If it's not there you can't eat it. We can increase our willpower by not putting ourselves in situations where willpower is required – steering completely clear of those “danger spots” where temptation is present and willpower is necessary.
3. Get Sleep
Adequate rest improves our self-control and provides an optimal environment for the brain to function. Rest reduces the body’s need for glucose, and it allows the body to make better use of what we have. Adequate rest is generally 7-8 hours a night for an Adult.
Self-control requires brain power, and when we are tired, our bodies generally don’t deliver enough glucose to our brains.
4. Be Aware
We are often so lost in thought, that our actions become automatic. Taking time to think about why you are making your daily decisions will increase your ability to focus and resist temptations.
To get started, try to catch yourself in an automatic behavior and ask yourself why you are doing it. This may be questioning why you are eating cereal instead of eggs for breakfast, or it may be questioning why exactly you put 2 sugars in your coffee.
Any way you can think consciously about a typical automatic behavior will increase your focus and self-control.
5. Remember why you started.
There are a number of reasons why we want to change, and it's for good reason. So when we consistently remind ourselves of why we want to make these changes and what happens if we don't then our willpower is increased to stick to our plans.