How to Hack Your Will Power

The Reality

  1. I resisted the urge to buy a packet of chips, for the way back home — yes, will power!
  2. Further along the road. I passed a cafe, a burger shop, and finally, the biriyani shop where I asked the cab driver to wait (Funny how I remember all the restaurants on the way, to later direct cab drivers). Again, I resisted the urge to buy something from one of those places — will power!
  3. During the drive back home, I noticed quite a lot of restaurants. There was Zaitoon, Coal Barbeques, Aasife Biriyani, Dominos, Pizza Hut. Not once did I consider buying dinner from one of those restaurants — will power!
  4. By the time I got home, I was super hungry (no thanks to all these things that had been tempting me). I resisted the urge to order food online — will power! — I went to the kitchen, fixed some food for myself, and had dinner.
  5. And that was when it happened: B had ordered takeout from the neighbouring Mallu restaurant — Porotta and Beef Roast (Much Mallu, Such Cliche). I looked at him eating — the crispy porotta, that naadan whiff of curry leaves, the gravy and of course, the beef that’s cooked just right. [Watch video for full effect]
  6. My willpower shattered — I simply couldn’t resist. I dug into his dinner, and didn’t stop until I felt like crap. (Which is when you normally figure out that you’re full).
    I ate the porotta not out of hunger, but out of failed willpower.

How the Hell Did I Do It?

  • Since I wasn’t traveling to/from work, I was exposed to zero pettikadas, zero restuarants, and zero hoardings. Just me and the four walls of my apartment.
  • Since I wasn’t traveling everyday, I found more time and energy to cook. Having food at home is a great deterrent to eating out.
  • If I did have any free time, I went to the gym.
  • And even if I had time after gym, I would be too tired to go out for anything, let alone food

My Will Power is a Limited Resource

How to Hack Your Will Power

  • Throw out all junk from your kitchen and fill it up with healthy groceries
  • Stop walking through the food court when you visit the mall. Not even to crack a joke. Years and years of research have gone by, before these businesses perfected their logo and colour schemes, that have been scientifically proven to increase excitement and heart rate.
  • While commuting, don’t look outside. Either look directly on the road, or at your phone, or close your eyes and get some well-needed rest
  • Schedule time for grocery shopping and cooking, make yourself forget about ordering food
  • Do not visit the mall
  • Do not add stuff on your Amazon wishlist
  • Do not Facebook, YouTube or Google about things you need to buy — retargeting will come back and bite your ass
  • Invest in a dance class or some online course, so that you’re busy during the weekends
  • Take a few whole hours and unfollow/click ‘Hide this Post’ on all negative posts that come up on your news feed. It will be a LOOOOOOOONG process, but it will be worth it. (Trust me)
  • Slowly stop talking to friends who only have negative things to say (Harsh, but true)
  • Join that dance class or online course to keep yourself busy during the weekends
  • Don’t hang out with people who aren’t working hard. (Harsh again, but true)
  • Distract yourself and keep yourself busy- don’t give yourself time to even consider the thing you’re trying to avoid.
  • Do something and distract yourself with something you’d enjoy. Like an adult colouring book. (If you hate going to the gym, please DO NOT make that your distraction. You will not even make it there, you will simply stay back and do more depressing things).

To Conclude

  1. Swear off something you want to avoid. Remove it from your homes, your work environments and (most importantly) your newsfeeds. Walk away from it when you ever see it from a distance,
  2. Distract yourself with something else, which isn’t self destructive, and which you don’t hate doing

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Farhana A. Khader

Farhana A. Khader

71 Followers

Co-founder at @teamhodo. Making healthcare accessible, understandable and interoperable. Serial writer, storyteller, content marketer ✍️