The Wonders Of Willpower

Dec 08, 2021

As we hurdle towards the end of the year and the chocolates start mounting up on our desks, the older parts of our evolutionary brain come under increasing pressure to focus on the long-term outcomes rather than the short term gratification.  

Willpower is often thought of as a ‘have or have-not’,  however researchers have shown that willpower is actually more like a muscle.  Like any muscle, if you put it under too much strain for too long a period it begins to fatigue.  Equally, like any good muscle, if you continue to strengthen it, it becomes able to handle more stress and strain for longer periods of time.  So how do we apply this to chocolates on our desk and the fact that it’s nearly the holiday season...

Daytime fatigue - as willpower is like a muscle it's better in the morning.  That’s why most people are more disciplined earlier on in the day.  If you have an arduous task that you have been...

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Decisions, Decisions

Nov 09, 2021

The world we currently live in is surrounded by knowledge and facts.  The internet has become the go-to place to search for new information,  the answer to a riddle,  a funny skit or even medical diagnosis.  The question is often asked whether we can sometimes wait for too much information before we make a decision and in that respect how much is too much.

The late General Colin Powell famously quoted the 40-70% rule of decision-making.  The rule would state that, if you make a decision with less than 40% of the information you were making a guess - a stab in the dark approach, shooting from the hip.  There wouldn’t have been enough information to assess the risks, consequences and the possible outcomes of taking such a decision.  While there was a chance that you could succeed you could just as likely, fail.  

If however, you wait to make a decision until you know more than 70% of the information then you may have waited too long...

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Adaptation

Oct 27, 2021

 

While many of us will have heard about PTSD it may be a surprise to find that covid-19 has led to psychologists categorising the pandemic as a collective trauma.  Their reasoning was because it was experienced by all and its psychological impacts were felt by many.  Data collected by Case Western Reserve University from 556  adults revealed a number of interesting statistics:

59% felt highly alert feelings and reactions

58% reported negative moods

30% were avoiding distressing thoughts and feelings

12% were recalling unwanted memories

86% reported 1 or more trauma symptoms

Furthermore, covid-19 has also led to a generalised loss of normalcy, lack of control of one’s life and a loss of trust in public systems.  The researchers stated that 94% people reported at least one symptom of grief and 23% admitted to sensations of overwhelm.  

With this in mind, how does an individual or society as a whole, repair the effects of such significant life...

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