What’s Better Than Willpower? Grit.

Hey there!

I’ve had a few discussions in this video series with you on how to get started, how to keep going, how to make things stick.

What about how to resist the backwards slide? The dropping of great habits? Going for that bagel or doughnut when you’ve sworn off carbs and sugar?

Turns out it’s got a great name: grit. Angela Duckworth wrote a whole book on Grit. And Jessica Stillman, writing in Inc. Magazine, recently listed 10 ways to be gritty and put grit to world-class use.

Link to Inc. article:

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Raw YouTube Captioning

hey there it’s David H Lawrence the 17th
today we want to talk about willpower
willpower is sometimes a really tough
thing to have a good handle on how to
create how to build in terms of quantity
and quality and how to stick with it the
willpower to start something the
willpower to continue something and the
willpower to also let go of things that
aren’t working anymore and I recently
read an article in ink magazine by
Jessica Stillman who was actually
looking at a book called grit by Angela
Duckworth and grit is an old term it’s
like it’s like from the Wild West you
know this guy’s got credit it’s even
better than self-reliance better than
according to Angela Duckworth and in the
course of the discussion of why grit
which is kind of this earthy Street just
nose to the grindstone
it’s like willpower but willpower
somehow has a loftier feel to it you
know sheer determination and guts you
know that’s that’s different willpower
is like I have willpower I don’t touch
the chocolate that is really good luck
in chocolate I don’t touch the chocolate
so there were quite a number of things
that you could do to help achieve and
maintain grit and they all have kind of
highfalutin names to them so let me see
if I can break them down for you the
first one is commitment devices and this
is making a commitment to only use and
acquire and manage those things that are
actually going to be useful and helpful
to you so all those apps you have on
your phone that you know you’re never
gonna use that wastes your time get rid
of them right and it’s easier said than
done I know or not buying a gym
membership when you know most likely
you’re just gonna walk by the gym
everyday right you’re just not going to
use that
offensive package that you bought that I
mean I buy classes all the time and I
feel bad when I don’t get to them right
away but I do eventually get to them as
quickly as possible and I think that’s
one of the ways that I show grit another
is temptation bundling it’s basically
bribing yourself you know if I spend a
half an hour on the treadmill
then I can watch that you know show that
I that I would be a would be a huge
waste of time for me to watch other than
that you know I’m gonna watch jeopardy I
mean it’s not a huge waste of time but
it’s certainly not as productive as it
could be situation modification again
highfalutin term it just basically means
avoiding those things that are tempting
that will degrade your performance so
not if you don’t want to drink don’t go
to a restaurant that serves alcohol if
you don’t want to you know eat sugary
foods don’t walk by a bakery temptation
and situation modification
self-monitoring I do a lot of self
monitoring and this is setting up a
system that helps you keep your goals
intact for example with this with the
notebook that I use not only do I use
BBEdit to keep track of all of these
episodes but I have a notebook that
shows me what I’ve done already and what
I’m planning on doing and what I haven’t
done yet right so you know getting
yourself a situation where you have that
self monitoring system mindfulness in
general just awareness of the present
and awareness of what you’re doing not
what not worrying about what you’re
going to do and not regretting what you
didn’t do right or dwelling too much on
what you’ve already been successful at
but really living in the moment it’s a
hard thing I’m learning it everyday
mental contrasting and this is where you
say well I could do this and this is
what that would look like or I could do
this and this is what that would look
like this not so successful this a
higher chance of being successful goal
setting and planning big part of it
setting concrete goals I’m gonna do 365
of these videos this year I’m going to
do one a day I’m going to release one a
day make
specific plans on how to meet them what
I’m gonna do for my lights on the new
for my camera what I’m gonna do for my
software etc another one is
psychological distancing and I do this
every single time I go to Buca di Beppo
I do psychological distancing I’ll watch
a big plate of spaghetti go by or I’ll
see like an awesome pizza go by as
they’re going to serve it to another
table or I’ll see like oh look at that
mozzarella bread that’s great
psychological distancing is that’s great
for them I celebrate what they’re gonna
do I’m gonna go back to my salad and my
Brussels sprouts you know and my sausage
and peppers putting it off in the
distance it’s like it’s great for them
not for me great for them not for me
making the future more relatable and
this is something that I have yet to try
so I’m gonna try this writing a letter
to your future self hey just so you know
you’ve done this it’s been great this is
how you got there this is what you can
look back on and be proud of making that
future more relatable it reduces the
chances that you aren’t going to do
ad hoc that you didn’t plan and maybe
isn’t the best choice right writing that
letter to your future self you did this
you did it this way here’s how you did
it here’s how here’s what you did here’s
what you avoid it and then finally
taking breaks this is a big thing and
I’ve got a I’ve got a lot of stuff
coming up on sleep and taking breaks is
akin to that it’s not the same as sleep
because sleep has some very specific
physiological biological psychological
things associated with it both the
getting of sleep and the lack of sleep
the deprivation of sleep but taking a
break we’ve talked about this in another
video you have to let things stick and
the only way to let things stick is to
stop the input for a while and just let
your brain go okay let me let me just
reflect on this and you know just do
what I need to do to restore myself and
then I can jump back into it full-force
the example they used in the article is
that nurses are better
at following hand-washing procedures
nurses and doctors are better at
following hand-washing procedures after
they’ve taken a break after they’ve
distracted themselves from their daily
routine what they actually do to serve
patients very interesting anyway grit I
hope you have it do you let me know
let me give give me your comments below
tell me what you think about this
has this been easy for you is it tougher
for you to some of these things help I’d
love to know please leave your comments
over at vo2 gogo comm that’s where the
conversation is saying and moderated and
polite if you would like to subscribe to
my channel on YouTube and be notified
the moment these videos come out and not
wait till the next day for the blog post
go ahead and click on my head there if
there’s no head there look for a
subscribe button somewhere below this
video if you want to see the absolute
latest video I’ve done go ahead and
click on that frame and YouTube will
play it for you
I’m David H Lawrence the 17th I thank
you so much for watching and I will talk
to you tomorrow.

5 Responses to What’s Better Than Willpower? Grit.

  1. David Wandelt May 27, 2019 at 7:37 am #

    Couldn’t agree more. It’s like the difference between talent and perseverance. Talent will get you started; perseverance will bring home the bacon!

  2. chet Hanson May 27, 2019 at 8:27 am #

    You are a good man, David.

  3. Stephanie May 28, 2019 at 9:14 am #

    Love the letter to my future self. So helpful. Love these videos!

  4. Bill Johnston May 28, 2019 at 11:43 am #

    David, just wanted you to know that I posted a link to this episode to a FB Group that I belong to, “Low Carb Support Group – Ditch The Carbs.”

    This is the text of the link:

    “I’m an audiobook producer/narrator and this video is by one of my voiceover gurus. Although the content is slanted toward this area, it is general enough to be of value to others because temptation and falling off the wagon are common occurrences,… You may have seen David on the TV series “Heroes” and elsewhere. His filmography is here:

  5. Todd May 28, 2019 at 10:27 pm #

    Great minds David. Giving 10% of everything to your agent is 100% the right thing to do. I have always done the same. I believe it is a manifestation of grit.

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