Willpower doesn’t exist


March 7, 2023

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When it comes to making positive changes in our lives, we often rely on willpower to help us achieve our goals. But what if I told you that willpower doesn’t actually exist? That may sound controversial, but hear me out.

Willpower is often defined as the ability to resist temptation or delay gratification in pursuit of a long-term goal. For example, resisting the urge to eat junk food in order to lose weight. However, the problem with relying solely on willpower is that it’s a limited resource. Just like a muscle, it can become fatigued with use and needs time to recover.

This means that if we rely solely on willpower to make changes in our lives, we’re setting ourselves up for failure. Eventually, our willpower will run out and we’ll give in to temptation. This can lead to feelings of guilt and frustration, and we may even give up on our goals altogether.

So, if willpower isn’t the answer, what is? The answer lies in our habits. Habits are behaviors that we engage in automatically, without much conscious thought. They’re deeply ingrained in our brains and can be difficult to change, but they’re also incredibly powerful.

Think about it – how much of your day is spent on autopilot, doing things without really thinking about them? From brushing your teeth to checking your phone, we all have countless habits that shape our daily routines. And if we can learn to harness the power of habits, we can make positive changes in our lives without relying on willpower.

“You don’t have to white knuckle your way through life.”


Here’s how it works: instead of trying to rely on willpower to make a change, we need to focus on creating new habits that support our goals. For example, if you want to start exercising more, you could create a habit of going for a walk every day after dinner. Or if you want to eat healthier, you could create a habit of preparing healthy meals at home instead of ordering takeout.

By creating new habits, we’re essentially rewiring our brains to automatically engage in behaviors that support our goals. This takes time and effort, but it’s a much more sustainable approach than relying solely on willpower. You don’t have to white knuckle your way through life. Setting up systems for your house and habits for your daily tasks reduces decision fatigue and allows space for your brain to tackle more creative pursuits.

Of course, creating new habits is easier said than done. It takes time and effort to establish new routines, and we may slip up along the way. But the good news is that habits are malleable – we can change them if we’re willing to put in the work.

So, if you want to make positive changes in your life, forget about willpower. Instead, focus on creating new habits that support your goals. With time and effort, you’ll be amazed at how much you can accomplish!

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