A new year comes with new resolutions and just about everyone has something they would like to achieve, right? Problem is saying and doing are not the same thing. We must first set a goal and then have the willpower to change ourselves.
A lack of willpower is often what people say is their barrier to making and achieving change. Willpower can be defined as your inner strength to make decisions, delay gratification and follow through. It gives people the strength to overcome temptations.
The Transtheoretical Stages of Change:
Most of us prior to the New Year are in the contemplation stage. We are aware of a problem or there is a change we want to make but don’t yet have a plan for change.
Preparation: The New Year arrives and we make a plan, establish a goal… we are prepared to take action!
Action…we modify our behavior or environment to make change. To be successful change should be maintained for 1-6 months.
Maintenance is the key to preventing a relapse. We must continue to exercise our willpower.
Which stage are you in?
I read a great book not too long ago called, WILLPOWER: Rediscovering the Greatest Human Strength by Roy Baumeister & John Tierney. It highlights some great points such as:
You must consciously work to strengthen your willpower. Baumeister says exerting willpower takes mental energy therefore just like a muscle can become fatigued from overuse so can your willpower. If your mind is too busy thinking about work, travel, clients, kids, etc., how can you have the willpower to obtain your goals when you are already mentally depleted?
Strengthening you willpower can be done a little at time. For example, I exercise mine by getting a goal to hold my stomach in every time I drive my car. Being conscious of how my abdominal area feels helps to build my willpower. It’s not a huge objective but this exercise strengthens my willpower to reach my bigger goals.
Reach your Goal
- To achieve your objective you must set a clear specific goal.
- Monitor your behavior toward that goal.
- Exercise willpower to reaching goal.
Best of Luck Reaching Your Goal!
Comments, sharing, following and reblogging are appreciated
Baumeister, R., & Tierney, J. (2011) Willpower: Rediscovering the Greatest Human Strength. New York: Penguin Press.
Bauer, K, Sokolik C. Basic Nutrition Counseling Skill Development. California: Wadsworth Pub; 2002 .