The Willpower Instinct - Book Review - How Self-Control Works, Why It Matters, and What You Can Do to Get More of It

Book Review, Episode #99

The Willpower Instinct by Kelly McGonigal, Ph. D.

Informed by the latest research and combining cutting-edge insights from psychology, economics, neuroscience, and medicine, The Willpower Instinct explains exactly what willpower is, how it works, and why it matters. For example, readers will learn:

Willpower is a mind-body response, not a virtue. It is a biological function that can be improved through mindfulness, exercise, nutrition, and sleep.
Willpower is not an unlimited resource. Too much self-control can actually be bad for your health.
Temptation and stress hijack the brain's systems of self-control, but the brain can be trained for greater willpower
Guilt and shame over your setbacks lead to giving in again, but self-forgiveness and self-compassion boost self-control.
Giving up control is sometimes the only way to gain self-control.
Willpower failures are contagious—you can catch the desire to overspend or overeat from your friends­­—but you can also catch self-control from the right role models.

In the groundbreaking tradition of Getting Things Done, The Willpower Instinct combines life-changing prescriptive advice and complementary exercises to help readers with goals ranging from losing weight to more patient parenting, less procrastination, better health, and greater productivity at work.

Daniel Taylor