Have you ever been so proud of yourself for staying on track all day, only to suddenly find yourself on the couch in the evening eating a bowl of ice cream and forgoing the workout you had intended on doing? You can blame decision fatigue for this sudden lapse in willpower.
What is Decision Fatigue?
Studies show that the more decisions you make over the course of a day, the harder it is to use your willpower or self control later on. So after a long day at work, a fun afternoon at the lake, or you’re feeling especially stressed, it’s particularly difficult to make choices: like choosing between going for a walk or watching Friends reruns. The path of least resistance tends to win.
While decision fatigue is bad for maintaining our habits and momentum, knowing that it exists means we can set ourselves up for success before it happens… and find ways to stay on track when it does.
Outsmarting Decision Fatigue
Some days are just going to be longer or more stressful than others, and we can’t always see decision fatigue coming. By taking unnecessary daily choices out of the equation, we can save our decision-making power for the choices that matter (like to drink a glass of water or pour another coffee).
This means planning ahead for things we know are coming. Such as:
When Decision Fatigue Pops Up Anyway
Since we can’t plan for everything (and we probably shouldn’t!) how do you manage when decision fatigue has set in and you are tempted to write the rest of the day off? Now that you know what is happening, it’s time for a little self-care.
After you “fill your cup” a bit, it may be easier to get yourself back on track. If not, that’s okay too. I give you permission to put on the comfy pants and watch a movie if that’s what you need after a rough day.
And if you’re finding yourself exhausted and veering off track too often, that’s what I’m here for.
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Hi, I’m Crystal!
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