The Mind Diet part 2

We’re talking about the three largest exaggerations in fitness here, motivation, willpower and control.

In part 1 we connected motivation to making you feel out of control so what of willpower? The issue with willpower is it is only a “gap filler”. Research has shown that not only is willpower a limited resource but as it dwindles so does self-confidence.

When subjects were asked to fill out tests they found groups allowed to eat both the good food and the junk food that was provided scored higher than those who were asked to only eat the clean food. Ability to think and make rational decisions reduced as willpower was ever more taxed (referred to as ego deflation).

This explains why if you try relying on willpower to control your behaviour you actually feel like everything is always slowly slipping through your grip. As your willpower temporarily exhausts your sense of becoming out of control increases. You end up always feeling like you are “never going to succeed” because everything feels like it’s trending in the wrong direction.

Continued in part 3:

4 Replies to “The Mind Diet part 2”

  1. moe says:

    a long time ago I use to teach a smoking cessation program and we made the same point. Willpower alone was not sufficient since the “batteries” would deplete or be affected by lack of sleep or ,worse yet, alcohol. I would teach my students behavior modification to succeed.
    As you say, willpower alone, reduces chances of success.

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