It turns out that willpower may be a finite resource, so it’s no wonder you’re more likely to bend to temptation later in the day.
Try a few of these tips to build up your willpower so you can keep positive habits going strong.
Arrange your environment.
- Clean: Get rid of your temptations, so you don’t have to resist them.
- Commit: Make plans with a friend who can hold you accountable.
- Optimize: Time tasks so they align with your willpower – like grocery
shopping when you’re already full.
Boost your willpower in the moment.
- Postpone: Say "not now, maybe later" to get the devil off your
shoulder when you're tempted.
- Distract: Give your impulse a chill pill by focusing on something else
for a few minutes.
- Hide: Remove the temptation from plain sight or remove yourself
from the situation.
Strengthen your ongoing willpower.
- Meditate: a 10-minute mindful meditation sesh every morning can help
improve impulse control over time.
- Sleep: Think of rest as a shield from temptations – the more you sleep, the
stronger it gets.
- Stop Swearing: Changing a speech pattern, like avoiding expletives, can
help you learn to extend your willpower.
Excuse your setbacks.
- Forgive Yourself: You’re human, after all! Give yourself a break when you
deviate from the path, and you’ll be more likely to get back on it.
Get more wellness tips at heart.org/healthyforgood
©American Heart Association 2018