By Emma Young
Need a boost of motivation? From diet tips to micropayments, here’s how to cheat your chances of achieving success. Read more
By Nina Zipkin
It isn’t enough to just want to achieve a goal. There are going to be times, when you’re busy, tired or discouraged and you’ll feel like you don’t have it in you to keep going. But you have to fight through those feelings to get over the hump and accomplish everything you set out to do. You need to have the willpower to persevere. Read more
Grit is the willingness to do whatever is needed to achieve long-term goals. Angela Duckworth at the University of Pennsylvania has been researching how grit correlates with activities like reaching the final rounds of the U.S. National Spelling Bee, or surviving the grueling first summer of training at West Point. She has found that being gritty is a better predictor of success than high IQ or SAT scores.
So, how do we become grittier? Is it even possible? Yes, it’s possible. How do I know this? I don’t, but I’m putting my money on the two techniques that I have used in my grittiest moments: outsourcing the decision to get started, and crafting an epic narrative. Read more
Stuck Moment: After a few weeks of gung-ho enthusiasm, we’re tempted to slip back into old habits and give up our resolutions.
You have to admire the enthusiasm that washes over us every January. It’s like we’re scrubbed shiny-clean with aspiration to make our lives better. Plus, we know we’re not the only ones trying to shed holiday pounds or master Twitter or finally launch a new business — giving us a nice boost from the camaraderie department.
Sometimes fresh zeal and plenty of company are enough to reach the finish line. But, not usually. This is a big “but,” because when we fall short, it’s easy to blame our willpower or circumstance, and be done with it. “Okay,” we say. “I’m too tired at night to cook, so it’s another year of ordering takeout. I can afford it. Sort of.” Sigh.
Not okay, because we haven’t given ourselves a decent run at it. Achieving a goal is not simply a matter of grin-and-bear-it endurance. Actually, it’s the opposite of that. Read more
By Nic Ferguson
Being honest, my biggest challenge is self-discipline — or lack of! And it’s an area I grow more aware of and want to challenge daily.
The trouble is, I find it hard to do what I say I want to do! For example, my intention was to write from 5.30am this morning, and guess what, it’s just gone 6am.
This isn’t uncommon for me and it gets on my nerves. Or rather, I should say, I get on my nerves. Self-discipline has been the biggest obstacle in the pursuit of my goals. Read more
When you think about your goals—whether it’s to actually meditate on the reg, become a better runner, or cut dairy from your diet—you probably think a strong willpower is how you make them happen. Well, here’s some news for you self-control pros: there’s something else that could be more effective in helping you succeed.
The true secret? Avoiding temptation completely. Read more