Willpower and Self-Control: What Recent Research Reveals

willpower and self-control

A guest post by Dr. Tali ShenfieldClinical Psychologist

So you have a goal in mind, but you can’t seem to meet it.

No matter how hard you try, you keep getting sidetracked.

Maybe you’re trying to get a project for work completed, but the incessant “ping!” of a new email or text message arriving to your phone has you glancing away from the task. Or maybe you’re working toward a healthy weight target, but those cupcakes in the kitchen are calling your name. The diversions of self-control are all around us, tempting us to forgo our intentions and goals.

Are some people more predisposed at pushing those deterrents to the background?

Is there a way to boost our ability to control ourselves and strengthen our willpower?

How can we keep distractions from bogging us down?

There are, in fact, scientists working to answer these questions, and we can use their findings to benefit our pursuits. Recent evidence suggests that the ability to resist temptation is stronger in some people than others. According to survey conducted by American Psychological Association, only about 15% of people have impenetrable willpower, focus and control over their actions, and about just as many give in to almost anything that crosses their path. (more…)