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Format: Hardcover|Vine Customer Review of Free Product( What's this? )|Verified Purchase
If you're into the science behind how willpower works, this is a really good read and I really enjoyed it. It's heavy going on the science front in parts (beware if you're not into that as it forms large sections of the book), but explains the research that others have done in detail, but in an easy to read fashion.
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on 6 September 2017
Really good book with a lot of research backed information, make sure you take notes and highlight sections this book will require referencing as it contains so many lessons.
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on 12 September 2017
Excellent can't complain
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on 27 March 2017
First book I've read in years, gives a good understanding and has opened my eyes to the many different ways willpower can be used and how combines with other fields.
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on 27 March 2017
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on 16 January 2016
What is willpower and where does it come from? I bought this book on January 1st; the day when people reflect on their past year and consider New Year resolutions. Often the problem with resolutions is that they can be easily broken. People have the right intentions (cut down on alcohol, eat less junk food, make more time for exercise), yet they lack the ability to make things happen.

Willpower: Rediscovering our greatest strength clarifies preconceived ideas of willpower and utilises psychological theories, research experiments and scientific studies, put in laymen terms, to express what truly defines us, humans, from animals, (on top of our ability to rationalise our actions).

Although this may seem sound as if the book is suggesting that willpower is inside us, the book acknowledges and explains why it is harder to motivate ourselves and follow through with our goals, which are usually dependant on a variety of key factors i.e. timing, mind set, glucose levels, and more.

Sometimes, we give ourselves tall orders, make unrealistic goals, think too ambitiously and expect more from ourselves, which often leads to procrastinating, committing vices and depression. Essentially, we don't know how to regulate our mental or physical willpower, and a lot of that is down to a lack of self-control.

Smart and progressive psychologists, Roy F. Baumeister and John Tierney explain how investing in self-control and self-maintenance can develop better relationships, build more confidence in ourselves and help us achieve our goals successfully. The book is insightful and unleashes some interesting findings, with results that often make sense. The research, sourced from a variety of sources, are also fruitful and suggest that there's a lot to be gained from self-discipline, patience, eating when your energy is low (such as keeping an eye on your glucose level), and getting regular sleep.

Chapters are separated by different sections that touch on a range of willpower issues such as raising children, criminality, decision making, dieting and why women become emotional during their period. Overall, it's a motivation book. Much of the advice is what we already know such as writing lists, surrounding ourselves with people in similar situations as ourselves, discipline, changing our lifestyle to suit our needs and not stressing out if we fall off the wagon.

It's also an easy read. You can get through it in a few days. It's the thing to read every year, in the beginning of the year.
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VINE VOICEon 19 February 2012
Format: Hardcover|Vine Customer Review of Free Product( What's this? )
I was intrugued with the title. It suggested a return to good old-fashioned Willpower. Further reading about the book revealed it would be revisiting will-power with a fresh perspective and some good experiments on people's willpower.

I finished the book in 4 days. Recently I've stuggled to find a book in the self-help field to grip me long enough to complete. This book was just what I needed.

I will say upfront this is not a spoon-feeding book. It lays out the experiments, the findings and some observations. Any inquisitive adult will be able to piece together the value of the findings.

One of the most important findings in the book is willpower requires energy. Its all very well writing out a book about change this, create to do lists, focus on one thing etc but if you've run out of willpower-fuel its just going to crash and burn.

Our fuel for our bodies is essential to keep going. Making some shifts that are not ingrained in us requires extra energy to make the shift. If we overload ourselves with too many changes we burn out and then no change is made at all.

The key is to manage our energy source. Its also to be very aware of how much it takes out of us to make changes. If we burn a lot of fuel in other areas of our lives, just from day to day living, we have to understand that progress is going to slow down.

Each chapter shows how we tick as humans and how our brains function. It shows when we are vunerable to weakness and how to avoid it. Most experiments show the optimum way to operate in a given situation. But also at times there is more of a combination that works.

I didn't find any chapter boring. I didn't find the book too long either. I totally enjoyed the book. I love it because it connected with my inner sense of logic and I feel the experiments shown in the book make the findings more accurate.

There is a very interesting chapter on how to develop your willpower. Although developing willpower in one area will give you the strength to develop in another area, without a goal in mind things won't happen by themselves. A chapter on David Blaine's Houdini-like discipline and willpower shows that even with superhuman willpower you won't send the necessary documentation to claim you world record unless you have the discipline of completing your paperwork... I found this very true really. All goals need to be clearly defined and agreed upon in the first place.

There is a great chapter on dieting. How most people have great willpower even when overweight. All they need to do is understand how to avoid temptation and stay on a good path of gaining results week by week.

Once new habits have bedded in, they require very little energy to maintain. So there is the initial graft to bed them, but after that they are running themselves.

I decided to make a list of habits I'd like to ingrain. One of them is to keep my whole interior of my car clean. My business and my personal training means I usually keep more stuff in my car than most. Nothing expensive, just stuff like cardboard for wrapping parcels, parcel tape, gym accessories, spare towel, a few car cleaning items, yoga mat etc but my boot has until recently been a complete jumble of stuff. The same was inside the main area. So my new goal after spending two hours cleaning it, was zero tolerance of leaving stuff on the car seats, organising proper boxes in the boot. Its a work in progress but it feels great knowing anyone can just jump in and sense the car owner takes a bit of self-pride.

But the book explains why this behaviour exists. Using a study on students and their limited energy resources. There is a limited resource of energy to do things that are very difficult, like study. So tidy rooms is regarded as a unnecessary drain on energy.

The way out of the behaviour is to bed in new routines, a few at a time and then they don't drain the energy. They run themselves effortlessly.

There are some review comments about the explorer Morgan Stanley from the 19th century. I felt it demonstrated the use of a lot of the techniques in this book to keep up the momentum of exploring a very treacherous Africa at that time for years.
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VINE VOICEon 24 March 2012
Format: Hardcover|Vine Customer Review of Free Product( What's this? )
As someone who believes that self-control is the ultimate virtue, I was pleased to read this volume on willpower. The authors raise some relevant questions and do try to stimulate thought in the reader.

This book is worth reading just to familiarise yourself with such terms as `hyperbolic discounting' and `the quantified self'. The Dieters Catch-22 is also one to look out for.

This book will give you more questions than answers, but will definitely make you think about the evils of procrastination and the real value of deciding to do something and actually following through.

In parts the writing drifts a little and this is probably not a book to read when you are sleepy. All in all a worthwhile contribution to one's own self-analysis and quite rightly a good reminder to practice willpower and self-control.

This is not a great book, but the biggest thing against it is that it addresses a subject that the majority don't wish to believe; that alone means that it is definitely worth a read.
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Format: Hardcover|Vine Customer Review of Free Product( What's this? )
A very interesting book with general observations about willpower, and looking at those who have more than others and possible reasons why this might be - leading to more specific observations about willpower in relation to dieting. Like the majority of women perhaps, I naturally found this section particularly relevant. After stating the obvious, that if your energy levels are low you will more resistant to giving in to temptation, and that it will be at its lowest when you are already overloaded with fatigue and stress, various coping strategies are suggested, none of which were ground-breaking - use smaller plates! - and will already have been suggested to the serial dieter.

Nevertheless the book does sum up nicely how to muster your forces for battle, making you more self aware, setting goals, postponement strategies and particularly, preparing for temptation. There are also some interesting suggestions about the link between external order in someone's life and internal self-discipline. It's all very sensible, get sleep, eat healthily in general etc, however after all the various psychological studies that are quoted, at the end of the day it seemed to me that the authors had never experienced compulsive overeating for themselves, and failed to take into account the fact that something that gives enormous pleasure when there is apparently no alternative pleasure in life is often a conscious, rather than subconscious, choice.
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VINE VOICEon 28 March 2013
Format: Hardcover|Vine Customer Review of Free Product( What's this? )
As someone with the willpower of a wet flip flop, I was encouraged to find out that willpower was a learned skill and my inability to stick with things was a learned behaviour that could be changed and not a sign of moral decrepitude.

Strong willpower is a characteristic that can make or break someone's life - potentially shifting it from a mediocre life to an extraordinary one. Persistence, focus and concentration are all skills that must be used, practiced and maintained to keep them functioning well. Finding and maintaining strong willpower is a gift that will reap huge rewards.

The book is well written and helpful, and I'd highly recommend it.
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