“I’m not a morning person.” or “I’m a night owl.”
Those are the excuses most people throw at me when I encourage them to get up earlier to work on making their dreams come to reality.
That’s fine, I’m not going to argue with you. Just read this.
In a well-known 1996 research study led by Roy Baumeister at Case Western Reserve University, the researchers had two groups of people sit down in a waiting room.
One of the groups was told that they could eat the warm chocolate chip cookies in the bowl in front of them, they just had to ignore the other bowl full of radishes.
The next group was told that they could eat the radishes but had to ignore the chocolate chip cookies.
After the experiment, the scientists came back in the room and told the participants they need to tabulate the results, and asked them if they would mind waiting around. While they were waiting for the results to be tabulated, they could try to solve this simple puzzle. Except, the puzzle wasn’t simple at all – it actually had no solution. The researches simply wanted to see how long each person would work on the puzzle attempting to find the solution.
Here’s what they found – the people that had to resist the cookies worked to solve the puzzle for an average of eight minutes. The people that got to eat the cookies but resist the radishes tried to solve the puzzle for an average of 19 minutes before they gave-up.
Why, you ask? This study allows us to come to the conclusion that willpower might be in limited supply. Self-discipline might be finite.
I believe that self-control strength is much like muscular strength. When you do bicep curls at the gym for an extended period of time, you will eventually hit the point of depletion, or failure after several repetitions. The same is true for self-control strength, it is a limited resource and can be depleted readily.
So if it is a priority for you, do it first. Do it early. No more excuses. Finish the difficult work before you have the opportunity to choose another option and watch your dreams become reality.