Would classify yourself as having strong willpower? You know those people that just don’t seem to be tempted by the same things that the rest of us are? They go to a party and don’t even notice that there’s cake on the table, while the rest of us are left drooling, trying to hold ourselves back from devouring the whole thing. Why is it that willpower is so difficult for some of us, and for others, it seems to come naturally?
Well, first, let’s define “willpower.” Willpower is having the strength or resolve to carry out your own desires, plans, and goals; it’s the desire to make something happen – to ignore all obstacles, and just get it done.
Notice I did NOT mention anything about “ability” in this definition. Willpower has nothing to do with your circumstances; it has nothing to do with having the “right” genes, job, education, living in the right neighborhood, knowing the right people, etc. And this is good news! Because it means willpower is simply a habit – a habit you can learn and master!
Willpower is something you can learn, and it’s something that will be incredibly powerful in helping you achieve all of your goals, especially those pertaining to your health and fitness this time of year with all of the holiday treats and temptations around. So I want to share with you my 5 steps for developing the willpower you need to lose weight and maintain it.
5 Steps for Developing Willpower
#1 – Clearly define what it is that you want.
Do you want to lose 10% body fat, 5 pounds, tone up? What is it you want to achieve and when do you want to achieve it by? Define this without ambiguity.
#2 – Research what it takes to get what you want.
What do you need to do to achieve this goal? What’s involved? If you don’t do some research and figure out what it takes, you’ll never know if you have the power, strength, and energy to follow through. You need a plan.
#3 – DECIDE.
Decide to make it happen. Once you have a goal and a plan, you simply have to decide that come hell and high water, you’re going to make it happen. Decide now you have the resolve to follow through.
#4 – Play offense.
The funny thing about people with willpower is the fact that they rarely have to exercise it! And this is because they simply don’t put themselves in those types of situations. Avoid situations that will tempt you, and if you can’t, have a plan in place so you’re on the offense, not the defense. For example, if you’re going to a party and are worried about overindulging, try having some protein beforehand to keep your belly full, so you’re not fighting off the treats. You’re prepared and have a plan of attack ahead of time.
#5 – Fix your boat before the storm hits.
You know the calm before the storm? Everything seems okay and under control, but you know in the near future your willpower will be challenged? For instance, you might feel okay about your weight now, but the holidays are approaching, and you’re worried about gaining the 10 pounds the average person puts on this time of year. Don’t wait until after the fact. Take care of it now; fix your boat before the storm. Get on a program that will help you with your health and fitness now, so you’re prepared.