Sunday, October 21, 2012


I'm reading a book about willpower:

It makes a few points:

1. Meditation helps you stay focused on your long-term goal. It helps you practice moving your thoughts away from distractions, back onto your breath or your meditative state. Later in the day, when you get distracted by a chocolate cake or a timewaster, you will be more practiced at pulling your thoughts back to your focus.

2. If you label some behaviors as "good" (exercising, saving money) and others as "bad" like a vice (dessert, splurging on expensive items), then doing good things will make you feel entitled to treat yourself to vice. "I exercised so I deserve to eat this ice cream." Instead of good vs bad, if you classify your exercising as contributing to your long-term goal, then it'll make you less likely to deviate.

This recent thinking about willpower also made me reflect tonight on how some products are purely brought into the world by the willpower of their founders. Steve Lawrence willed Google Desktop into existence, via sheer force of will. It seemed like Paul Buchheit did the same for Gmail, though I did not see that one until just after launch. Mariam does the same for expanding Minted into the art and party markets. Sometimes you go into a mode where you become maniacal that you must bring a certain thing into the world, and you become obsessively determined to do it. I wonder what percentage of products are created this way.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Thank you so much for this recommendation!!! I started reading last night, and already I'm seeing incredible insights! Work hard, but be good to yourself and respect your real wishes!

More book recommendations in the future please!