Currently viewing the tag: "self-control"
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Criminologists and sociologists have long believed that people commit violent crimes when an opportunity arises and they’re low on self-control. “It’s an impulsive kind of thing,” says Thomas F. Denson, a psychologist at the University of New South Wales. He cowrote the new article with C. Nathan DeWall at the University of Kentucky and Eli J. Finkel at Northwestern University. For the last 10 years or so, psychologists have joined this research, using new ways of manipulating self-control in experiments; they have found that, indeed, self-control and aggression are tightly linked.
A psychological scientist can deplete someone’s self-control by telling the subject they’re not allowed to take one of the cookies sitting in front of them. Studies have found that, after people have had to control themselves for a while, they behave more aggressively. In a 2009 study, after someone’s self-control was depleted, they were more likely to respond aggressively to nasty feedback that ostensibly came from their husband or girlfriend. Specifically, they assigned their partner to hold a painful yoga pose for longer. -Science Daily
Fiction Writing Prompt: Write a story where one person purposely depletes another’s self-control and what happens.
Journaling Prompt: What depletes your self-control and how do you react?
Art Prompt: Self-control
Non-Fiction / Speechwriting Prompt: What aspects of modern life are depleting our self-control and leading to a generalized increase in aggressiveness?
Photo Credit: seriousbri on Flickr
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In the new study of desire regulation, 205 adults wore devices that recorded a total of 7,827 reports about their daily desires. Desires for sleep and sex were the strongest, while desires for media and work proved the hardest to resist. Even though tobacco and alcohol are thought of as addictive, desires associated with them were the weakest, according to the study. Surprisingly to the researchers, sleep and leisure were the most problematic desires, suggesting “pervasive tension between natural inclinations to rest and relax and the multitude of work and other obligations,” says Hofmann, the lead author of the study forthcoming in Psychological Science.
Moreover, the study supported past research that the more frequently and recently people have resisted a desire, the less successful they will be at resisting any subsequent desire. Therefore as a day wears on, willpower becomes lower and self-control efforts are more likely to fail, says Hofmann, who co-authored the paper with Roy Baumeister of Florida State University and Kathleen Vohs of the University of Minnesota.
Scientists who study the complex interplay between desires and self control say that passing up on temptation is made ever more difficult by the idea that there is no single or clear feeling that alerts us to when our willpower is low. “But we find that when willpower is low, everything is felt more intensely,” says Baumeister, author of Willpower: Rediscovering the Greatest Human Strength. “Low willpower seems to turn up the volume on life.” -Science Daily
Writing Prompt: Write your character’s internal monologue about resisting temptation.
Journaling Prompt: What strategies work for you in resisting temptation?
Art Prompt: Willpower
Photo Credit: Unfurled on Flickr
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