Developing self control is not always easy to do, especially when you’re trying to change a habit you’ve developed over time. To help fight your desire and stay the course, think of desire as a wave that builds and eventually passes by.
If you’re trying to cut back on something—or stop all together—passing on the chance to indulge once doesn’t win you the war, just the battle. Travis Bradberry at Inc. suggests giving yourself some time to ride the wave out before you cave in:
Desire has a strong tendency to ebb and flow like the tide. When the impulse you need to control is strong, waiting out this wave of desire is usually enough to keep yourself in control. The rule of thumb here is to wait at least 10 minutes before succumbing to temptation. You’ll often find that the great wave of desire is now little more than a ripple that you have the power to step right over.
Take a deep breath and let that dangerous wave pass. Distract yourself with something you enjoy that won’t affect you negatively. Sometimes one wipe-out can undo all the hard work and time you’ve already put in. Willpower can be hard to manipulate in your favor, but with the right mindset and a little determination, you can brave the deep waters of unwanted desire.
Photo by Richard Freeman.