The Willpower Instinct by Kelly McGonigal

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The Willpower Instinct written by Kelly McGonial is number 3 on the road to 52 books this year.

You want to know how to really improve your health, happiness, and productivity?The Willpower Instinct is the book you need to read. This one will change your whole perspective on what you think”willpower” is.

I was always under the impression there was only one will power. It was the will power to move us towards the desired goal. Kelly proposes there are three separate types of Willpower – I Will, I Won’t, and I Need.

Each one is very different in its intention and focus. Kelly goes through the science indicating willpower is not an unlimited resource. If you’re focusing too hard the self-strong can actually be bad for your health.

I’m sure you have heard the saying, “everything in moderation”. To some extent it appears to be true. However, if you push your brain to an extreme, the guilt and shame over your setbacks can lead to you giving in again. It appears to be the reason why so many of us fail at weight loss.

According to Kelly though, self-forgiveness and self-compassion boost self-control. Giving up control is sometimes the only way to gain self-control. I know that sounds counterintuitive, but it’s true.

The biggest thing I gained from this book was that willpower is a mind-body response. Very much like a muscle being trained can grow, our willpower can get stronger as well.

Throughout the book, Kelly offers different challenges to help strengthen the different types of willpower. This is something that makes the book extremely helpful. This book is not just another book you read/listen to. There are actually activities throughout the book for you to work through.

As I continue down the path this year to be more mindful, I hope my willpower gets stronger. To see the books I have listened to last year and so far this year, go to the Book List.

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