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Factors That Hinder Your Willpower

Watching someone achieve great success or accomplish incredible feats can be awe-inspiring. Many people look at successful people and think, “I wish I could be that motivated.”

Well, the good news is that you can. A crucial element to success is an ample amount of willpower. Willpower is the ability to control and discipline yourself in order to achieve a particular goal. It requires delaying instant gratification and resisting any temptations that keep you from achieving your goals and dreams. It takes a lot of motivation to maintain willpower, but the success and rewards are always worth the effort. 

Though it may seem like some people have an unlimited supply of willpower, the truth is that willpower is limited for everyone. However, many factors deplete willpower quickly, making it seem like some people have little to no willpower at all. Therefore, this article will discuss some factors that can hinder willpower so that you can increase yours to achieve your goals and dreams. 

Too Many Decisions

Having too many decisions may deplete your willpower throughout your day. When you utilize precious mental power to make mundane decisions, you leave little for self-discipline or to make crucial decisions later on. 

This is why some famous leaders, such as Barack Obama or Mark Zuckerberg, wear similar clothing every day. They don’t want to waste their mental energy early in the day on such an unimportant decision. Instead, they need to stay focused, energized, and disciplined for more crucial decisions. 

Ego Depletion

Tying into the last point, if you have what psychologists call “ego depletion,” you won’t have the willpower to stay motivated, disciplined, and make critical decisions. Ego depletion occurs when you use up your precious energy and willpower on unimportant tasks. 

For example, maybe you prefer to get all your errands done early in the day. When you get home to start working on your business, do you feel motivated and energetic? Probably not. All your energy and motivation were used up on other tasks, so now you just feel tired and lethargic. 

To avoid this, prioritize your most important tasks first thing in the morning. Then as your energy fizzles out throughout the day, you can use whatever is left to work on more mundane and unimportant tasks. 

This is why many companies don’t have crucial meetings or make major sales calls at the end of the day. By then, the employees are mentally checked out and ready to go home and rest for the day. 

Lack of Sleep

If you’re exhausted, you aren’t going to have much motivation to work towards your goals or resist any temptations. Therefore, ample sleep is essential to increase your willpower and improve your mental health in general. 

For example, maybe you have set a goal to run every morning after waking up. If you slept a solid eight hours and feel fully rested, you are more likely to jump out of bed and go straight for a run. However, if you only sleep for about five hours the night before, you’ll lack the necessary motivation and energy and instead lie in bed for another half hour. 

Low Confidence

Willpower requires you to believe in yourself. If you have low self-esteem, you aren’t likely to motivate yourself to work towards your goals. 

Those who remain motivated and driven believe in themselves. They have healthy confidence that keeps them going, no matter what challenges get thrown their way. Therefore, finding ways to boost your confidence is crucial to increasing your willpower. 

Stress and Anxiety

Stress and anxiety drain your energy fast. That’s energy you need to keep your willpower going. Unfortunately, these conditions are accompanied by negative thinking, which will also put a halt on your motivation or self-discipline. 

Anxiety has a way of tensing people up to protect them from perceived dangers. Unfortunately, you are more likely to freeze up when you are anxious instead of moving forward towards your goals. This makes it more likely that you will give up on your dreams or at least work on them at a significantly slower pace. 

If you live with chronic stress, anxiety, or a similar condition seeking treatment or therapy may help you through these blocks. Working on the symptoms of these issues will help bring you the optimism and energy needed to increase your willpower. 

Marie Miguel Biography
Marie Miguel has been a writing and research expert for nearly a decade, covering a variety of health- related topics. Currently, she is contributing to the expansion and growth of a free online mental health resource with With an interest and dedication to addressing stigmas associated with mental health, she continues to specifically target subjects related to anxiety and depression.