In order to make any changes in life, we need self-discipline and willpower. Changing anything like our routines, or adopting better habits, or pursuing any goal all require a level of consistency and resolve. Unfortunately, not everyone has an abundance of willpower, in fact, most people struggle with it. Today I’m discussing the relationship between self-acceptance and willpower, and how you can increase yours.
The thing about willpower is that the more you give up and quit, the more it weakens your willpower over time. Your mind stops taking you seriously. You say you’re going to do something, but deep inside you know your track record for giving up. This is why it’s very important to make small, manageable goals that are easy to accomplish. It builds confidence, strengthens the will, encourages, and motivates.
How Self-Acceptance Helps Increase Your Willpower
When you have internal battles with yourself, when you’re hard on yourself, it wastes a lot of energy. It actually consumes the energy you need to be disciplined. The vast majority of people who really struggle with willpower have a lot of internal conflict. If you are berating yourself, saying that you’re not good, not worthy, then you will find yourself exhausted. You lose the energy to make the changes that actually matter.
Then what happens is you become tired of yourself, tired of the internal struggle. You’ll find things to do that make you forget about yourself – mindless browsing, drinking or doing drugs, zoning out in front of the TV, playing video games, etc.
The solution requires a bit of self-analysis but mostly compassion for yourself. There are things that are not in your hands, there are experiences that you are meant to go through. If we were truly in control of everything, wouldn’t we have fixed it all long ago? Would we choose to be sad, angry, or depressed? If negative emotions come up then observe them, watch them. Be gentle about it, know that’s ok, and then ask yourself what’s really bothering you?
When you think about willpower, remember that is not a resource in infinite supply. Recognize the fact that being down on yourself, even being down on yourself for not having more willpower, only decreases it further. If you want to increase your willpower then take it easy, be gentle with yourself, focus on one thing at a time. Accept yourself.