Temptation can come in many forms throughout life such as physical health, relationships, gambling, shopping, or many more things. One should be able to execute self control and resist temptation to better their life. I believe that it is okay every now and then to give in to what you want if you think maybe you deserve it or need a break from “being good” all the time. In the book “The Willpower Instinct: How Self-Control Works. Why It Matters. And What You Can Do to Get More of It.” I learned a few methods in order to execute better self control in my own life and it worked!
The first section that I found interesting was “The First Rule of Willpower: Know Thyself”. In this chapter it discusses self-awareness which I actually do a lot when horseback riding. Funny how what my trainer tells me, “have some discipline (or self-control) in order to get it done correctly”, the book also says “You need to recognize when you’re making a choice that requires willpower; otherwise, the brain always defaults to what is easiest.” I did not realize that I was doing what I was doing until my trainer pointed it out and I saw it on video, only then did I feel when I started doing it and was able to be more self-aware of when I was about to do it. I am able to prevent it now after two months of hardcore self-awareness!
Another section that I found interesting was the “Willpower Experiment: What’s Your ‘Want’ Power?”. Willpower can run low at times and deplete just like a battery. I used this exercise when I was at work one time. I am a cashier and our store puts out baked goods on the front counter so people can buy them as an impulse buy on the way out. Lucky me I get to stand there for ten hours smelling the sweet goodness of the iced lemon cake, my favorite. By the later half of my shift I am tired and usually hungry so sometimes I bring a snack from home to either save money or avoid eating something unhealthy. I have thought about buying the lemon cake probably two times within two weeks of reading this section and every time I went to go buy one I used my “want power”. My “want power” was “I want to lose weight” which is more important to me in the long run instead of choosing the sooner instant gratification option because that will not get me to my future goal and will only set me back.
The third section I found interesting was the “Under the Microscope: Are You Borrowing Credit From Tomorrow?”. It asks you to pay attention to the promise of future good behavior and if it effects the current behavior of today. Well, if you ask me it definitely does! If I have half the day filled with bad choices of let’s say unhealthy food, then I will say the day is wasted and will continue to eat whatever I want the rest of the day and start over the next day. Usually I am always good the following day as I will feel guilty about the previous day and realize all the “undoing” of my fitness routine and healthier eating habits. Although lately I have been better about not allowing myself to continue down the rabbit hole of junk food and will continue to make better choices throughout the day instead of just throwing the day away completely.
I do believe that the book was correct and educational, although a few of the references seemed silly, the main concept of the book was informational and overall helpful. I liked how the author gave the reader things to practice in their daily life in order to better themselves and achieve a goal, how they used outside studies, and how they use humor throughout the book. I think that this book should remain an option for future class readings. I would definitely recommend this book to a friend who really needs help with willpower and I would definitely like to use some of these techniques in therapy sessions with future clients!
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