Will Power

There’s a reason it’s called “willpower” and not “wantpower”. When you use the word “will” there is an inherent intention built into it- like it’s a forgone conclusion- like you WILL do something. Will is powerful. Want, on the other hand, is weak. Wanting something is liking the idea of something, while simultaneously not really having the will to make it happen.

People want lots of things. People want more money. People want to win at things. People want to be rock stars. People want to be professional athletes. Austin Powers wanted a solid gold toilet. You can want all you want but at some point you have to change wanting into willing. When you say “I will get a solid gold toilet” you are committing to it. You are committing to a series of actions that will eventually culminate in you owning a solid gold toilet. When you say “I want a solid gold toilet” you are saying you like the idea of having one but are half committed to actually going through the process of attaining one.

There’s a reason Will. I. Am is not Want. I. Am because he knew he would get stuck below stardom if he was in a state of wanting. By choosing Will he knew he was choosing a far more actionable name. Combine that with the fact that when you remove the periods you get “Wantiam” which is a silly name that nobody has.

If you are really intent on doing something specific start using the word “will” instead of “want” to describe your intention around it. It’s hard to say that you will do something if you don’t intend to at a deeper level- try it- your subconscious will catch it on the way out of your mouth and there will be an instant of self doubt. That instant of self doubt happens when you don’t actually believe you are willing to do what it takes to get that want. It’s always easy to use the word want. You can want all day without your subconscious catching it because wanting has no power. Wanting has no substance. Wanting has no intent.

But here’s the most important thing. You have to direct your willpower at the process. If you spend too much time directing willpower at the outcome it turns into a want. Outcomes are not actionable in and of themselves- they are moments in time that result from a process. You can’t will an outcome into fruition- but you can will the hell out of the process that gets you to that outcome.

About Jasper

Jasper is an Ironman Champion and professional athlete turned coach and entrepreneur. He also has a passion for the philosophical and creative side of life. This is his personal blog.

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