Socrates once said: There is but one philosophy; fortitude, self mastery.
It is often said, before you can master the world around you, the self is the first. Without self mastery, you cannot reach any of your set goals. Self mastery requires you to have a strong will power. Frank Tibolt, the author of A Touch of Greatness states over and over again in his book, “The will is the man. Will makes men giants.”
Will power is the resolve to overcome the inertia, laziness and procrastination. It is the ability to decide on something and see it through. It is the perseverance to overcome physical and mental fatigue and finish what has been started. Will power is the cornerstone of success, be it spiritual or material.
Having knowledge alone without the will power to take action will get us nowhere. Francis Bacon said, “Too many develop every talent except the most vital of all, the talent to use their talents . . . will power.”
There is no substitute for will power. Knowledge, money, good looks and status cannot take its place. It is a trait that you must develop within and here is the one method that will help you to achieve it:
Make yourself do one useful thing every day for no other reason than that you don’t fee like doing it. By applying the method above, you will build character, initiative, courage, persistence and most importantly will power. William James, the famous American psychologist of the 19th century said, “Do something every day for no other reason than you rather not do it or don’t feel like doing it.”
Let us be honest with ourselves. The main reason most of us have not made more of ourselves is that we haven’t been tough enough with ourselves. We have been procrastinating, dawdling, pampering and giving excuses instead of getting down to business. It is time to act and stop dodging responsibility, being soft to ourselves and wasting our time on trifles and pleasures.
Here are things that you can do to develop will power in 6 weeks.
Week 1: Find a praiseworthy trait in a different person every day for a full week and praise him or her for it.
Week 2: Completely cut-off TV for a whole week. For some this will be easy and for others this will be tough, but no matter what, stick with this. And enjoy the extra hours you gain by doing something useful.
Week 3: If you are overweight, cut down on your desserts for the whole week. Do not eat between meals.
Week 4: Keep detail daily expenditures and cut down on unnecessary spending. If you feel like going for a movie, don’t do it. Do not purchase anything that you already have.
Week 5: Read biography of great men and women. Try to read at least one, but if you can do more than that, then do it.
Week 6: List down all that you need to improve personally and professionally. Spend at least 15 minutes on this everyday and another 15 minutes on thinking of ways you can achieve this.
After you have you completed this 6 exercises, go on and design your own exercises for the next 6 weeks. And after that another 6 and after that another cycle until becomes second nature.
Your will like your body and mind needs to exercise daily and that for the rest of your life. So get tough, get rough and force yourself to do one useful thing every day for no other reason than you don’t like doing it.