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Tip #12: Be Well, Willpower Up!

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Positive Habits

Welcome to tips for living a healthier life: the Healthy for Good Program (HFG). This week's tip (#12) is to Be Well.

Although this is our final tip, being Healthy for Good doesn't stop. AHA & U of U Health will still be here for you every step of the way.


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How to Increase Willpower

It turns out that willpower may be a finite resource, so it's no wonder you're more likely to bend to temptation later in the day.

Try a few of these tips to build up your willpower so you can keep positive habits going strong:

Arrange your environment.

  • Clean. Get rid of your temptations, so you don't have to resist them.
  • Commit. Make plans with a friend who can hold you accountable.
  • Optimize. Time tasks so they align with your willpower - like grocery
    shopping when you're already full.

Boost your willpower in the moment.

  • Postpone: Say "not now, maybe later" to get the devil off your
    shoulder when you're tempted.
  • Distract: Give your impulse a chill pill by focusing on something else
    for a few minutes.
  • Hide: Remove the temptation from plain sight or remove yourself
    from the situation.

Strengthen your ongoing willpower.

  • Meditate: a 10-minute mindful meditation session every morning can help
    improve impulse control over time.
  • Sleep: Think of rest as a shield from temptations - the more you sleep, the
    stronger it gets.
  • Stop Swearing: Changing a speech pattern, like avoiding expletives, can
    help you learn to extend your willpower.

Excuse your setbacks.

  • Forgive Yourself: You're human, after all! Give yourself a break when you
    deviate from the path, and you'll be more likely to get back on it.

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HFG is a partnership with the American Heart Association.