Monday, December 15, 2008

The Key to Success is One Thing at a Time

Did you know that each of us has a limited supply of willpower, and that if you exert it in too many areas at once you run out? This could explain why if you try to make too many changes in your life at once, you may end up giving up.

A study from Case Western Reserve University revealed this. When researchers placed freshly baked chocolate chip cookies before two groups of participants they told one group to eat two or three and the other to eat radishes, while watching the others eat the cookies. Afterward, everyone was asked to try and solve an impossible puzzle. Those who had to resist the cookies gave up on the problem twice as fast as those who indulged.

The researcher, Kathleen D. Vohs, PhD, said to think of the reserve like gas in your car. When you resist temptation you use some up. The more you resist, the emptier the tank gets until you eventually run out of gas.

This is an important consideration if you are trying to make health changes. You should focus on the most important thing you want improve and avoid making other changes at the same time. For instance don't try to cut back on television time and try to eat healthier at the same time. You will be much more likely to give up before being successful.

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