Giving myself permission to relax and really mean it has made a world of difference. More focused, energized and peaceful, I consciously and consistently chipped away at a deeply ingrained habit. Now that's willpower in action.
Why do we make bad decisions? Why do we eat that extra cookie or choose a cheeseburger instead of a salad with grilled chicken? It turns out there is nothing wrong with you when you give into fatigue or temptation. Your brain has simply run out of gas.
Anyone who has tried to break a bad habit has experienced the trouble with willpower. You want to stick to your diet, but you find yourself standing at a buffet filled with tempting desserts. Psychologists have been quite interested in understanding why willpower works so poorly.