A big part of modern thinking is the idea that we are entirely in control of our actions. That is to say that there is no other driving force behind what our actions other than what we think we need to do. This leads to the problem of others assigning blame purely on the character faults rather than situational faults. If you do something that others disagree with then it entirely because of your lack of will that made it happen and thus entirely your fault.
And yet, this is a bizarre way to see the world and the entirely of actions of others. If will power is truly as powerful as we immediately think it is, then that by definition means there should only ever be fault of character to blame, and that is preposterous. It is this action of intertwining these two traits that has been the driving force for a lot of bad will among many people.
Will power is regularly over ruled by more base mechanisms and situations. If this was not the case then there would not be a billion dollar weight loss industry simply because there would be folks that have nothing but the pure will power to achieve their goals. To be fair some people do have this level of self discipline but it is a very rare trait indeed. And yet the real solution to some of these issues, such as weight loss, is to take will power out of the equation. One cannot gain weight if they do not have the food available to do it. If you do not have that choice to make and there is no driving force to enact said will power being summoned, then it becomes a null proposition. No means of failure means no possibility to fail of your own will - in that sense relative to others - your character remains intact even though it should have never come down to this dillema.
So when we see people struggling with things like Smart phone addiction and they try to use pure will power or all manner of tricks to ween themselves off of these devices - it seems like the one trick that works almost every time is the easiest one of all. Get rid of the phone. If you do not have the means for desire then you will not have the means to fulfill said desire.
To change ones sense of thinking will involve a lot of personal change, but it is not always achieved by always attacking it head on but by using a side channel. The easier side that has a greater chance of success simply because it eliminates possibilities of failure - and in that moment it also ends up creating new positive possibilities. To some degree this is starting to step into the realm of traditional magic.
Magic in the traditional sense is the act of changing ones thinking in accordance with will. This can be used to improve ones self but it can also back fire and make folks do nasty things in trying to achieve their goals. Some books on topics such as 'Chaos magic' could have those words replaced with 'personal change' and they could be considered some of the best self help books on the shelves, but sometimes you have to take the side channel to make these things work.
There is the factor of needing the will power to enact the change of means via restriction but this is typically a far easier proposition than just trying to over come temptation. A lot of Alcoholics figure this out and will typically remove themselves from the physical location of their temptation if it starts to become to overbearing. This is not always guaranteed to work but it probably has a greater chance of success over just sheer mental stubbornness.
Back to Index