Defining self-control and willpower, the author quotes that self-control is the ability to set goals while willpower helps the individual to attain those goals. In addition to setting goals and achieving them, it is equally important to access how far we have reached in attaining them in order to know the effectiveness of the strategy used. Citing practical examples the author also cautions that willpower can become fatigued when it is overused. The more a person exerts resistance in one particular task the possibility of performing less well in other tasks increases. Despite the fact that the ability to exercise willpower also depends on the genetic makeup of an individual, psychologists believe that people can find ways to exert the same by placing controls in tempting activities such as spending and eating. In less serious experiments which were conducted to test the self-control of the participants, those who considered the experiment to be fun displayed higher self-control compared to those who undertook the experiment as a serious work. However, the author ascertains that it should also be borne in mind that self-control is a virtue and that it cannot be considered lightly. In addition people may lack the skills to practice self-control or they may possess the skills and lack the ability to use them rightly. This can be rectified through proper counseling guidance. Even practicing to keep out the temptation for the time being will help to overcome it in the long run and in addition people can also develop a belief that resisting the right temptations will only bring reward later in life.
Tugend, Alina. “Pumping up the self-control in the Age of Temptations.” The New York Times. 8 Oct. 2010. Web. 31 Aug 2010.