Wisdom//

The Shocking Truth Behind Willpower (and Why It Can Lead to Failure)

Willpower is essential to success, but it can also lead to failure.


Many studies have revealed that self-control is an integral part of your life — it enables you to make significant changes, be it in education, career, or personal endeavors. Self-control is an essential ingredient for success.

If you have strong willpower, you will most likely end up seeing promising rewards. But what about those times when you are bogged down by negative thoughts or emotions, or fall for short-term gratification?

The reality is that even though science has already proven that willpower is a pre-requisite for better results, not everyone can lead a life of intense self-control. Admittedly, it is tough to go against your own tendencies and innate desires. The battle happens within your head, and most of the time, that is where you’ll find the source of your failure.

Willpower can be too self-centric, meaning that it weakens your capacity to adapt to unstable environments, whereas temptations and other harmful factors are mostly external. According to psychiatrist, Dr. David Hawkins, “It is the illusion of individuality that is the origin of all suffering”. Hence, making positive changes means not only being empowered from within, but also having a sense of connection with the outside world.

Let me share three tried-and-tested practices to help you grow and fulfill your greatest potential, by learning to connect in the right way and cultivating more of a ‘we’ kind of attitude.

Start by finding a mentor

To ensure that you achieve success despite internal struggles, you need to hear from the perspective of an expert or professional, ensuring that you will receive sound advice that is science-based and data-driven. If you are only sticking to your own thoughts, don’t be surprised if you end up with emotionally-biased decisions that impede your future success.

A mentor is someone who can expose your blind spots, which your willpower cannot always do. Mary Barra, CEO of General Motors, has talked about the fact that others can see various aspects of your personality as you progress in your career, aspects that you may not be aware of.

If you haven’t been hitting your financial targets over the past few months, seek out the help of a trusted financial professional. They will perform an unbiased financial check-up, guide you in implementing strategies, and seek to straighten out your bad habits. In this way, you will constantly be moving toward your long-term goals.

Learn the value of shared growth through delegation

According to Richard Branson, “As much as you need a strong personality to build a business from scratch, you also must understand the art of delegation. I have to be good at helping people run the individual businesses, and I have to be willing to step back. The company must be set-up so it can continue without me.”

You face challenges daily. If you want to achieve your goals faster and more efficiently, you don’t have to do it alone. If you rely exclusively on your own willpower, you are limiting possibilities and approaches.

Delegation is a skill that you’ll master over time. It starts with the acceptance of personal limitations and the willingness to discover the potential of others. By learning how to delegate, you’ll build trust with the people with whom you work and encourage them to grow. When they are involved in your progress, you will be cultivating a healthy culture of excellence.

Surround yourself with goal-driven people

As you focus on connecting with the world, be aware of the kind of people with whom you surround yourself. Avoid spending time with individuals who are indifferent to the concepts of self-improvement, sacrifice, and growth, as you will unconsciously be absorbing the wrong mindset.

Choose to network with people who give the utmost importance to their own long-term goals. Their level of commitment will serve as an inspiration that will motivate you to rise above the things that are impeding your growth.

“Over the course of one’s life, there are a few people who have a major influence on the way you look at the world and define what is most important.” — Michael Bloomberg

The bottom-line

While it’s true that your success depends on how much you are willing to go above and beyond what is necessary to reach your goals, humans are social beings, so you should associate yourself with people who can promote positive change. Establishing the right connections and building relationships that foster positive transformation are keys to empowering you to become the person you’re aiming to be.

You might also like: 

How to Transform Your Fear of Failure Into Success

10 Uncomfortable (Yet Surprising) Habits That Will Make You a Happier Person

The 1 Reason Most People Never Become Successful

Call to action

Do you think these tips were helpful in strengthening your willpower? Share them with me on Twitter!

You can also check out my firm LexION Capital for more tips on how to grow your wealth and become financially secure.

Originally published at medium.com

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