“Is there a way to strengthen someone’s willpower?”
That was the question on researchers’ minds as they learned more about how the science behind this human virtue. Through many tests, they had discovered that willpower is like a muscle – it gets tired from overuse and requires food to replenish.
You know your neighbor who is out for a jog every single morning? How is it that she can get herself out of bed at such an ungodly hour, then throw on her running shoes and hit the road? And worse yet, do it all with a big, sickening smile? It’s enough to make you want an extra helping of bacon, just out of spite. Well, it turns out that the more she runs, the easier it is for her to will herself out of bed and she probably has an easier time turning down fried breakfast foods, too.
A workout is a key to strong willpower. A 2016 study indicated that the more exercise you get, the more willpower you gain.
To find out, researchers at Macquarie University in Sydney found 24 non-exercisers between 18 and 50 to partake in a 2-month study. They were given free gym memberships and asked to exercise just 1x/week for the first month and 3x/week for the second month. Throughout the study, they would test the participants on various self-control activities from resisting temptations to persevering through challenging tasks.
The results were nothing short of remarkable. After just 2 months of exercise, every participant had indeed increased his or her ability to resist temptations and persevere.
But the benefits didn’t end there. Those who regularly exercised reported a decrease in smoking, alcohol and caffeine consumption, and an increase in healthy eating, emotional control, attendance to commitments and improvement in study habits.
Exercising releases endorphin in our body, reducing the fat percentage, anxiety levels, the chances of becoming sick, and of course. But, best of all, it improves our willpower.
A good meal and some exercise will help you live a much healthier life. More specifically, it will maintain and even increase your willpower reserves.
This is probably the most ignored habit of all since. It’s easy to give in to temptation and eat like crazy, feeling guilty about yourself afterward. But what you eat and how much you exercise has a direct effect on your energy level and how your prefrontal cortex will work.
Eating healthier is not rocket science. Eat a more plant-based, less-processed diet to provide your brain with more energy and your body with the necessary vitamins, proteins, and minerals.
Regular physical exercise is one of the best techniques you can use to build your willpower. Unfortunately, many people never get to see the full benefits of exercise because they set unrealistic workout schedules and aren’t able to remain consistent. When coming up with a plan to exercise, remember that consistency is far more important than frequency. It doesn’t matter if you start by lifting weights, or by going for a walk. As long as you remain consistent, you will build up your willpower muscle and become strong both physically and mentally!