The Science Of Willpower
Within that component is the study of motivation and willpower.
Willpower, self-discipline and the quest for mastery are an important element in fitness, self-defense and martial arts training. Unfortunately, like other things in life, being disciplined and consistent with the “right things in life” is easier said than done.
Martial texts are full of references about the importance of self-control, self-discipline and “walking the path” through ongoing training and self-improvement.
“Mastery is not about perfection. It’s about a process, a journey. The master is the one who stays on the path day after day, year after year. The master is the one who is willing to try, and fail, and try again, for as long as he or she lives.” ~ George Leonard
I firmly believe (and science agrees) that the willpower developed through the process of ongoing training will “spill over” into other areas of your life and make you a more disciplined and consistent person in general.
In researching a future blog post on willpower, I came across an interview of Dr. Kelly McGonigal, instructor of psychology at Stanford University, who wrote one of the best books I’ve read on the subject… called, “The Willpower Instinct.”
Dr. McGonigal’s research isn’t specific to self-defense or combative training but if you use your imagination, it’s not hard to draw the connection.
I found this video discussing many of the concepts from her book fascinating. I thought I’d share it with you…
We ALL have our willpower challenges: missed workouts, smoking, drinking too much, junk food, and the list goes on…
What are YOUR willpower challenges as they relate to your training?
About Randy LaHaie
I’m the founder of “Protective Strategies,” a training and consulting company providing self-defense and combative fitness solutions to law enforcement, high-risk professionals and private citizens since 1994. I am a retired police officer, court-declared expert in use-of-force and critical incident performance, and a life-long student of self-defense and combative fitness. “My Thing” is to help people incorporate functional and minimalist workout strategies to improve their health, fitness and personal safety.