Willpower and Mini Habits
Thursday, December 15, 2016
Recognizing that I have very little willpower or self-control, I borrowed an audiobook from the library: "Willpower: Rediscovering the Greatest Human Strength" by Roy F. Baumeister and John Tierney. Fascinating material. It gives insight into some of the whys and wherefores, but doesn't give a lot of suggestions on improvement until later in the book.
Meanwhile, I also had a small paperback laying around (also borrowed from the library). I picked it up one day because I wanted to read something in general but nothing in particular. Certainly not enough to go finding one of the several other books I had already started, LOL. And this one was small and looked innocent enough.
Low and behold, what I read in the small paperback, "Mini Habits: Smaller Habits, Bigger Results" by Stephen Guise, fit perfectly with what I was hearing in "Willpower!" He even mentions Baumeister's studies in his book! I just love when things build on each other without intentionally planning it.
I've been trying to use some of what I have learned to increase my willpower. One exciting thing is that practicing willpower in one area can improve it in all areas. The flip side is that using willpower in any area depletes it in all areas. So we have to be careful to use our willpower efficiently.
Mini-habits, Guise says, should take a minute or less. I've set two goals for myself. Both exceed that, but I am finding some success by having such small goals and focusing on just two.
*Practice writing 10 minutes a day
*Exercise 2 minutes a day
These two habits actually drove me to get back on SparkPeople. I wanted a way I could track my streaks. What better way than the Spark community?