No matter what goals you want to achieve, without willpower, you will never stick to your goals. Why do you think people procrastinate? They delay and choose instant gratification because they lack willpower.

Willpower is the combination of self-discipline and motivation that you have over your behavior.

When your willpower is low, you tend to procrastinate and delay doing tasks or work that you feel uncomfortable or difficult.

On the other hand, when your willpower is high, you seem to be more motivated and able to resist the temptation to work on what’s supposed to get done.

Imagine your goal is to build a successful online business. And because you need to work during the daytime, you can only work on your internet project in the evening when you’re free.

There’s a problem though. Unless you’re someone who has strong willpower or you are very well-disciplined, most likely, you will never stick to your plan to work on your internet project at night.

The reason? Well, after going through the entire day, you’re exhausted and you have consumed most of your willpower.

This is why most people find it hard to focus on their work at night. The motivation is low and not to mention that there will be distractions too.

You Can Develop Your Willpower for Success

The good news is that willpower works like a muscle. You can develop it as you learn how to use it and manage it better.

Imagine your willpower like the battery bar of your phone. When it is fully charged, you can perform better and there are no issues to run any apps.

However, as you go through the day, making decisions, working, taking action, and thinking, you use your willpower and it slowly depletes.

As your willpower gets lowered, you find it more and more difficult to focus and maintain your productivity. You will easily be distracted by your surrounding and even your own thoughts.

As a result, your productivity suffers, and you fail to perform at your best.

What you need to do then is to recharge your willpower so that you’re able to work at your optimum level again.

So, learn how to use your willpower to accomplish your goals and achieve greater success in life.

Manage your willpower so that you work with it and not against it.

Below are 10 tips on how you can hack your willpower and use it to stick to your goals and plans…

1. Avoid multitasking

The first thing you need to do is to avoid multitasking. We’ve been sold by the wrong perception to think that multitasking is effective, but it is the opposite.

Multitasking actually lowers your productivity.

In fact, our minds are not built to multitask. What really happens when you multitask is you’re switching from one task to another.

When you multitask, you’re not doing 2 things simultaneously. Instead, you’re jumping and changing your focus from one task to another, back and forth.

This uses more of your willpower and quickly tires you out. Plus, we can only focus on one thing, we can’t focus on doing 2 things at the same time.

As I’m writing this article, I’m playing soft background music. When I’m fully concentrating on writing, the background music somehow faded and I don’t know what music is playing.

The same goes for everything. You can’t multitask. Try to listen to songs with lyrics and type your articles or read a book, you can’t do it.

Your mind can’t focus on both of the tasks at the same time.

When you focus on listening to the song, you will stop reading. And when you focus on reading, you will not be listening to the song.

Hence, if you want to make full use of your willpower, don’t multitask.

Instead, choose to focus on doing one thing at a time.

Read: Time Block: The Technique For Superb Focus And Productivity

2. Reduce resistance

By now, you should understand that doing tasks that are more difficult and uncomfortable requires more willpower.

Therefore, what you want to do to conserve your willpower is to lower the resistance of doing the work.

  • It is easier to read a book for 5 minutes than to read a book for an hour.
  • It requires less willpower to exercise for 10 minutes than to hit the gym for an intense workout for 2 hours.
  • It is easier to focus when there is no distraction.

The key is to learn to reduce the resistance for the task that you want to get done.

For instance, if your target is to make 100 cold calls, what you can do is to break down the task into something smaller that requires less willpower.

Commit and focus on making just 10 calls. After you make that 10 calls, take a 5 minutes break and then only continue to make another 10 calls.

You want to make it easy and more comfortable to act. When a task is huge and overwhelming, you need more willpower to tackle it.

Here’s another great example: If you want to go jogging each morning, go to bed with your sports attire on, place your running shoe by the entrance, and fill in your water bottle before you sleep.

This way, the next morning when you wake up, everything is ready for you. You don’t have to spend time thinking whether to jog or not to and you don’t need that much willpower to execute the behavior.

Read: Why Start Small? The 5 Important Benefits of Starting Small

3. Work when your willpower is strongest

Try to find out when your willpower is strongest, and then schedule your most heavy and important tasks during those periods.

For most people, we have the strongest willpower in the morning after we wake up. This is because we have fully rested, and our willpower is at peak.

It is easier to say no to temptations in the morning than in the evening when we’re exhausted.

Hence, if you are a morning person, schedule your important work in the morning. And schedule less intense work at other times when you don’t need that much willpower to execute.

For example, I do my writing in the morning. And in the afternoon, I usually do something without much creative power like creating Pinterest images with Canva or scheduling Facebook posts.

Find out when is your most productive hours and then use those times to complete your most important and difficult task.

4. Fuel your willpower

Yes, you can recharge your willpower. Studies have discovered that when you exert your willpower, you use your energy and blood glucose. So, replenishing glucose as you go through your day is important.

When the sugar levels in your blood are low, you will find yourself more difficult to focus and maintain your productivity level.

Foods that are high in sugar will give you a willpower boost. Carrots, almonds, raisins, apples, etc., are good foods that will fuel your brain and increase your willpower.

Try to take a sweet when you feel a little tired. The sweet gives you energy and a short willpower burst.

However, you have to make sure that you don’t overeat though.

5. Automate decision making

Do you know why Steve Jobs always wore the same clothes? He was always on a pair of jeans and a black turtleneck shirt.

This is because when we make decisions, we use our willpower to decide. And if you have to do a lot of big decisions in the morning, you will find that your willpower quickly dissipates, and you feel exhausted in the late morning.

Do you know that there was a study conducted on the Israeli Parole Board and showed that the board members were more likely to grant parole at the start of the day and after breaks for food?

The more decisions you make, the more you use up your willpower.

And when your willpower is low, you tend to make bad decisions and lose your focus.

Therefore, try to reduce the amount of decision making you need to take and automate it when possible.

One good method to automate decision making is through planning. When you have a plan, you don’t have to think about what to do or getting lost in distractions.

When you know what to do, you don’t need to think about it anymore. You can just focus on the task and do it.

6. Build habits for routine work

Another great way to hack your willpower is by developing good habits. Think about it, how much motivation and willpower do you need to brush your teeth each morning?

Not much. You don’t even think about it, you will just do it each morning, right?

That’s the power of a deeply rooted habit.

What you need to do then is to turn your work or task into habits. When a behavior becomes a habit, you don’t need that much motivation and willpower to execute it.

As a blogger, I need to create content and write articles every day. Guess what I did? I turn it into a habit to write every morning at about the same time.

And I have been doing this for years. Now, I don’t find writing a difficult task anymore. It has become my habit. I will just sit on my chair, put my hands on the keyboard, and start typing.

I don’t ask myself whether I should write, I just do it.

That’s the power of habits.

So, if you want to manage your willpower, transform your behaviors into habits. Use habits to help you lower the resistance and so you can focus your willpower on something else.

Here are some useful guides to help you develop success habits:

7. Manage your stress

Another thing that will consume your willpower is stress. So, if you want to restore your willpower, learn to manage your stress better.

Our willpower is emotional in nature. Meaning that when you are stressed, your willpower will be affected. You can’t focus on your work when you are constantly worried about something else, right?

When you are stressed, you tend to talk to yourself negatively. This makes you feel bad and guilty.

Thus, try to avoid negative thinking. And more importantly, manage your stress level.

8. Get enough rest and sleep

Yes, make sure you get enough rest and sleep. There is a reason why we need to sleep at night. We’re not machines, we’re human beings. And we need to sleep.

Many people think that to be more productive, they need to spend more time on their work. As a result, they sacrifice their sleep.

They think that if they can sleep for 4 hours, they will have more time to work on whatever goals they are pursuing.

However, they fail to realize that the quality and performance of their work will be greatly impacted.

There is no point to work 20 hours a day if you’re going to deliver a poor quality job.

It is always a wiser choice to get enough sleep and rest, and then deliver an excellent job in 4 hours than to feel tired, sleepy, can’t focus, and have to spend 8 hours to deliver a crappy job.

It is not about how much time or hours you can put in. It is about performing at your best and creating real results.

This is why you need to make sure you take enough sleep every night.

And when necessary, take power naps to recharge and replenish your willpower and energy.

Read: 5 Steps To Taking The Best Power Nap Ever

9. Exercise and eat healthily

Do you know that exercise is not only good for your body but also your mind?

When you exercise, your brain releases endorphins that make you feel good. Plus, exercise helps release stress and boost your creative power.

In her best-selling book, What the Most Successful People Do Before Breakfast, author Laura Vanderkam discovered that most successful people incorporate exercise as part of their morning routine.

Vanderkam wrote in her book, “These are incredibly busy people. If they make time to exercise, it must be important.”

If extraordinary people make time to exercise, don’t you think that it means exercise is important and you should do it too?

Besides exercise, eating healthily also helps in improving your willpower. You are what you eat. And what you consume will directly influence your energy level.

When you take in too much protein, fat, and carbohydrate as lunch, you will suffer the afternoon slump. After the heavy lunch, you feel sleepy and tired.

This is why keeping an eye on what you put into your mouth is important. Eat more vegetables and fruits, take a balanced diet, and eat healthily.

10. Work on your priority first

One of the most powerful ways to use your willpower to achieve your goals is to always work on your priority first.

You see, as we go through the day, making decisions, thinking, working, etc., we use our willpower, right? It becomes more and more difficult to focus as we progress through the day.

Therefore, the best way to make sure we are productive and able to produce amazing results in life is to focus on getting the most important work done the first thing in the morning.

If it’s your job to eat a frog, it’s best to do it first thing in the morning. And if it’s your job to eat two frogs, it’s best to eat the biggest one first.

Mark Twain

Most people choose to do less important work first. And when it comes to their priorities, they don’t have much motivation and willpower left because they have spent them on less important work.

Guess what they do then? They procrastinate and leave the important work for the next day. And when tomorrow comes, they repeat the same cycle.

If you are truly committed to your goals and you want to achieve outstanding success in life, don’t leave the most important work behind. Do it first.

Work on your goal the first thing in the morning. The rest can wait.

Read: 7 Techniques How To Manage Your Energy For A Maximum Productive Workday

Conclusion

Never underestimate how willpower can impact your life and success. When you know how to better manage your willpower, you can become productive and unstoppable.

Make good use of your willpower so that you are setting yourself up to win. If you want to achieve your goals and stick to your plan, work WITH your willpower, not against it.

This article may contain affiliate links. Meaning, at no additional cost to you, I will earn a commission if you click through and make a purchase. As always, I only recommend products and services I trust.
Author

I'm a blogger, writer, and also an internet entrepreneur. If you want to learn more about me, kindly go to the About page. By the way, have you downloaded your FREE copy of Reach Your Goals? Don't forget to do so. Cheers. :)

2 Comments

  1. Wow, these are very cool tips! I always thought that I do not have willpower, I can’t achieve what I want. But I changed my mind after your article, I want to build up my willpower like muscles. It will take a lot of time, but the habits that I build will remain with me for a long time and I think this is something that all people should do. I will save your post, thanks for sharing this!

    • Shawn Lim Reply

      Hey Gloria, yepp, willpower is like muscles, you can train yourself to have stronger willpower. Try to challenge yourself to do difficult things regularly… Exercise is a good method. Like running, when you’re exhausted, it is your mind that is telling you to stop. Break through your limit and you will have better energy, stamina, and willpower. That’s how professional athletes did it. 🙂

Write A Comment

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.