Work on improving your posture.
Unexpectedly, the best results came from the group working on posture. That tiresome old advice—”Sit up straight!”—was more useful than anyone had imagined. By overriding their habit of slouching, the students strengthened their willpower and did better at tasks that had nothing to do with posture. The improvement was most pronounced among the students who had followed the advice most diligently (as measured by the daily logs the students kept of how often they’d forced themselves to sit up or stand up straight).
And it’s not the posture aspect that does it — it’s consistently working to change a habit that improves self control:
You could try the two-week posture experiment to improve your own willpower, or you could try other exercises. There’s nothing magical about sitting up straight, as researchers subsequently discovered when they tested other regimens and found similar benefits. You can pick and choose from the techniques they studied, or extrapolate to create your own system. The key is to concentrate on changing a habitual behaviour.
If that’s not enough, clench your fists too.
Read more posts on Barking Up The Wrong Tree »
NOW WATCH: Briefing videos
Business Insider Emails & Alerts
Site highlights each day to your inbox.