Review: Willpower Doesn't Work by Benjamin P. Hardy

Summary of book: "How to make the biggest decisions of your life--and why those decisions must be made in specific settings How to create a daily "sacred" environment to live your life with intention, and not get sucked into the cultural addictions How to invest big in yourself to upgrade your environment and mindset How to put "forcing functions" in your life--so your default behaviours are precisely what you want them to be How to quickly put yourself in proximity to the most successful people in the world--and how to adapt their knowledge and skills to yourself even quicker How to create an environment where endless creativity and boundless productivity is the norm " Source

Before reading this book I was already aware of a few things: 1. relying only on willpower will never work, because when we're tired or aren't feeling at our best it's easy to give up on things we set out to do 2. there is the internal and external component to living a disciplined life 3. it's easier to rely on knowing your why, hacking your environment, and building amazing habits than to rely on only willpower. 

This book was read as research material for my online coaching course, and upcoming ebook on discipline.

What I hoped to learn: 1. Forcing Functions 2. How to help others find their internal motivations 3. How to set up a disciplined life without using willpower.

What I learnt: Willpower is for people who haven’t decided what they actually want in their lives. If you’re required to exert willpower to do something, there is an obvious internal conflict; i.e. it is the choice of environment. You are responsible for shaping and choosing the environments that will ultimately shape the person you become and the destiny you have.

Environmental design is your greatest responsibility. Choosing and shaping your environment is at the center of what “free will” really means, because your choice of environment and external influences will directly reflect in the person you become.

My main takeaways:

1. If you have 3 hours of high quality focused time in the morning, use that for your most important work instead of using it to exercise. The quality of the work is often more important than the quality of the exercise you get.

2. External shapes that which is internal i.e. your worldview, beliefs, and values didn’t come from within you, but from outside of you.

3. When you place yourself in situations with extreme demands, it challenges you to bring out the best in you.

My action steps: Test out not exercising in the morning for 1 month, relook at my highlights and see what I can implement into my content, and reconsider the environment I am creating in my life.

Summary: It was a great book that provided a good amount of basic knowledge about the topic of willpower. It supplemented my knowledge and reinforced many concepts

If you would like to see how I journal my thoughts, click here .

To help you increase your learning by 10X, I have created a Learning Filter (which I used to journal my thoughts above).


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