This article is the final part in a series of articles and follows on from the previous article The Will to See Your Plan Through to the End. I based this article series upon an inspiring quote from Sidney A. Friedman. I found it to present a fantastic structural guide for achieving whatever we want in our lives.

“You can achieve anything you want in life if you have the courage to dream it, the intelligence to make a realistic plan, and the will to see that plan through to the end.”

– Sidney A. Friedman

Increasing your willpower is just like strengthening your muscles through exercise. You get stronger the more you use your muscles and by progressively lifting heavier and heavier things. So to, the more you exercise your will and the more challenging an experience is to your willpower the stronger it will grow.

Outer Techniques
Many forms of physical exertion are perfect for forging an iron will. Here I classify such things as outer techniques because they make use of the physical. Though in actual fact whenever we are concerned with strengthening willpower it is by definition an internal process.

Exercising for long durations takes exceptional willpower. Things like running are perfect for forging character. Ask anyone in the military or boxer. The body cries that it must stop. The pain and discomfort become intense as slow minute after slow minute drags by. However if you continue to press on many people find to their surprise that there really was more left in the tank.

“A great oak is only a little nut that held its ground.”

– Author unknown

High intensity interval training is just as effective. Although the duration may be much shorter the intensity level makes for a situation where often you may rather die then do another interval of exercise.

Other excellent “outer techniques” for building the will include taking a deep martial arts stance and holding it for 30 minutes or more. Try holding a low horse stance for 30 minutes or an hour with sticks of incense in your hands. Enjoy the pain.

Inner Techniques
Meditation and qigong are perfect “inner techniques” for forging your will to persevere. During long meditation sessions the mind begins to lament it’s boredom. You may suddenly find yourself recalling all the things you wanted to get done today.

At times I’ve personally had experiences while meditating where the longer I stay sitting the more my mind begins to cycle between the practice at hand the sudden decision to get up. Each time this occurs I have to rein in my mind and bring it back to the task at hand. Setting how long you wish to meditate before sitting and sticking to it is one way to go about this. A regular long-term meditation practice certainly takes great perseverance.

“Men fail much oftener for want of perseverance then for want of talent.”

– William Cobbett

By developing our willpower and ability to persevere we will be better equipped to face and overcome the obstacles that block the path to our dreams. Without the will to see your plans through to the end your plans are useless. Worse they are pointless. If you give up on your plans before seeing them through to the end you will fail 100% of the time. On the other hand if you refuse to never give up there is nothing that can stand in your way.

That concludes this article series on how it is we can achieve whatever it is we want in life. If you missed the previous articles you might like to start at the beginning by reading the first article in the series – The Courage to Dream.

I hope you have found these articles helpful and inspiring. We are each highly talented, powerful and unique human beings. We are each uniquely capable of achieving something very special with our lives. Whatever that something may be I wish you all the best on your journey along the path to your dreams.

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