The brain, just like a computer, needs to be studied and also understood before it can be utilized effectively. To be able to be able to increase the performance of our willpower and self-control we must know what directs our actions.
There are basically two main forces controlling each action that we take and all the decisions that we make. The first is “the pain/pleasure behavioral instinct. In everything we all do, we do possibly out of our need to prevent pain or our desire to obtain pleasure.
The pain/pleasure rule does not necessarily mean that we are on a constant pursuit of satisfaction. What it means is that whenever two or more options are opened, any one of these option will seems to be more pleasurable compared to the others which is the option that we will obviously choose.
There are times when a more challenging option will be chosen simply because there are promises of better pleasure in the future. That could be the case of a young man who would decide to save his money to purchase a car in the future. Not spending the cash right away is not the most pleasant option presently but that option is overridden by the belief of a much greater enjoyment in the future.
The other main motivation that directs our behavior is the need to adapt to our identity. All of us act consistently with our views of who we truly are, regardless of whether that view is accurate or not. That is because one of the most powerful forces in the human organism is the demand for consistency.
Now that we understand what forces direct out lives, we now have a clue as to how we are able to improve our willpower and self-control. What we need to do to enhance our performance on self-control is simply to work with the mechanisms that guide our behavior, the pain-pleasure mechanism and the self-worth or supposed identity.
We should attach so much to following our preferred plan of action and so much pain to not carrying it out that it will eventually become impossible for all of us not to achieve what we start to do. In addition to that, if necessary, we must really change the way that we see ourselves to be.
For instance, let us take the scenario of somebody who finds it very difficult to sustain his ideal weight. To preserve the resolution to stay at a particular weight, the person has to attach a lot of pain to any weight increase therefore much satisfaction to keeping up with the ideal weight that it gets to be nearly impossible to break the resolution.
To improve the resolution, the person can include in his self-image that getting thin as well as in shape is who he really is and being at the mercy of gluttony is one thing that he is not.
Use helpful stress relief techniques, such as exercise and meditation, to feel much better. McGonigal points to a report displaying better self-control within just 3 hours of meditating. Meditation enhances willpower since it trains the brain to break before functioning.
Our brains are designed to utilize the promise of reward to ease feeling bad. Why does stress result in cravings? It comes from the brain’s battle or flight reaction and its preference to guard our body and mind. Stress tweaks our brain into a reward-seeking state. We find ourselves “craving any substance or action that our brain associates with a guarantee of reward.”
How do we stay away from this? When confronted with stress and disappointment, increase self-compassion to increase motivation together with self-control. Understand that challenges are part of being human and don’t consider it as a justification to indulge further. Forgiveness boosts responsibility, giving a support to our self-control. Experts have realized that taking a self-compassionate perspective on a personal failure tends to make people more likely to take personal responsibility for their defeat than whenever they take a self-critical perspective.
By utilizing the mechanisms of the pain/pleasure intuition as well as the leading guide of the self-image, will power is virtually not needed at all. It is well known that willpower can be quite useful for short term resolution however when considering long-term obligations, success is far from simply being certain.
The most convenient way to increase the performance of willpower and self-control is simply by directing our life in a manner that they are merely required for temporary implications. For the long-term responsibilities, the pain/pleasure intuition and self-image mechanism can do a very useful job. Doing just what we like and respecting the self-image is usually simple. That ought to be a no-brainer.