Will power?

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From Noga Sachs, MS
Health Promotion Manager
Jones Lang LaSalle

Managing weight can be tough. It’s not just about your plans and intentions. It’s also about what comes your way, like that candy bowl that’s sitting right next to your desk full of your favorite candy staring you down every day.

A lot of people call this ability to resist temptations “will power.” It may well be, but it sounds forced. I don’t know about you, but when I’m forced to do things I usually go back to what I would have done normally the minute I get the chance.

Here’s an idea. When we think about strength there are a couple of different prototypes. There’s the bodybuilder where they grit their teeth and fight to put the weight over their heads and put it down at just the right moment. That sounds a lot like will power to me.

There is also a more controlled, smooth type of strength, like the type we see that gymnasts and swimmers have. The smooth and refined motions required to gracefully slide through the water or along the floor undoubtedly call for sustainable strength. So it seems that when we’re trying to limit our holiday candy consumption, we’d be better off using smooth control.

How to do this?  Here are some ideas:

* Bring food with you from home that mimicks the flavor of the treat you’re trying to avoid.
* Don’t let yourself get hungry – even if you have to put a reminder in your calendar, eat something healthy every 3-4 hours.
* Drink water. Often we mistake hunger for thirst.
* If you can avoid seeing the tempation, avoid it. Take a different route to the bathroom or conference room. Whatever it takes.

Good luck sliding through the holidays one and all, and limiting those treats.


Noga is a Life Coach at Jones Lang LaSalle.


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