Willpower or Self Discipline

Last week, I shared a video titled, “Why WillPower + Self Control Will Not Help You Lose Weight” and while it seemed to resonate with most of you, I did have a handful of people who were really confused by this suggestion. 

So I wanted to pop in to clear up the way I see this.

My definition of willpower and self control is when we believe there is an external plan, diet, or eating approach that is the right way to eat and all we have to do is have the will and the self control to follow the rules and then we will be good.

When believe the plan is over there, it invites us to disconnect with our selves, our lifestyle, our experiences, and our inner knowing.  Instead of using our inner wisdom as a path to help guide us to the goal, we abandon ourselves,  and then wonder why we can’t will or control ourselves enough to get to the goal.  It’s like you are constantly fighting against yourself and you’re never going to win.

If you are one of the few who can maintain enough willpower and self control to get to your goal, you often find that while you may reach the goal on the scale, the emotional desire for freedom and confidence and self approval is far from being met.

When we will ourselves to stick to the plan, not only do our bodies shrink but our sense of being shrinks as well. And to me, that trade off is not worth the cost of admission.

SELF DISCIPLINE however is a different conversation.

For me, self discipline is a process of getting to know yourself and your truths and then  practicing becoming the kind of person who honors and lives that truth.

This is not based on what someone else is telling you about you, but based on what you discover to be true about you.

The path of self discipline is weaved with patience, love, compassion, forgiveness, understanding, and lots of trial and error.

When you discover something to be true about you and your body and your soul, then you practice honoring that truth by living the habits and actions that support it.

Not because it will make you skinny or accepted but because it makes you feel good.

This is why I do encourage people to TRY on lots of different eating styles, so you can see what actually works and doesn’t work for you.  And again, when I say work,  I mean what FEELS good.

And I don’t just mean the food on your plate.  Does it feel good with your lifestyle?  Your responsibilities?  The time you have to focus on it? Etc.

When you know something to be true for you, then the practice of honoring that is also for you, and thats what I would call self-discipline VERY different from self control and or willpower.

And it might not look exactly the way you thought it was suppose to look.

In this video you will learn:

  • My definition of willpower
  • My definition of self control
  • Why we sometimes feel like we are constantly fighting ourselves + our bodies
  • Why focusing on how you FEEL is more important than how you look
  • How accepting your body makes the journey a bit easier

Your turn!  Have you ever experienced how willpower and self control can actually sabotage your best efforts to be healthy and/or lose weight?

Come down to the comments below and share your thoughts, questions, ideas, and/or your aha! moments.

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