7. Build Your Willpower Muscle

Your self-control “muscle” is just like the other muscles in your body; when it doesn’t get much exercise, it becomes weaker over time. But when you give it regular workouts by putting it to good use, it will grow stronger and stronger, and better able to help you successfully reach your goals.

To build willpower, take on a challenge that requires you to do something you’d honestly rather not do. Give up high-fat snacks, do a hundred sit-ups a day, stand up straight when you catch yourself slouching, try to learn a new skill. When you find yourself wanting to give in, give up, or just not bother—don’t. Start with just one activity and make a plan for how you will deal with troubles when they occur (“If I have a ...

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