The One Force Stronger Than Willpower — That We All Possess But Never Use

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woman sitting on steps

Even pinching my thigh to a bloody mess didn’t help.

1 AM. New city. Deserted roads. My girlfriend sleeping on my shoulder. A shady-looking taxi driver. 

The drowsiness was intoxicating.

Shifting her weight, my girl snuggled onto my chest. Then, an overpowering surge of love snapped me awake.

Like caffeine on steroids, it vaporized the drowsiness.

Cradling her head and caressing her hair, I stayed hyper-alert for the rest of the ride.

Because I now had a mission — to keep her safe at any cost.

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Here is the #1 driving force of every human being:

Frost-bitten toes. Gangrenous wounds. The acrid stench of death. Inhuman starvation. Grueling soul-taxing labor.

While most Holocaust prisoners gave up, Viktor Frankl persevered.

Will-power wasn’t the secret.

A strong purpose was — the intense love for his wife and the meager hope of reuniting with her.

Fueled by this purpose, he took it upon himself to help other prisoners find their "Why."

"Those who have a ‘why’ to live, can bear with almost any 'how'." ― Frankl quoting Nietzsche

Frankl would later pioneer the groundbreaking psychological discovery that our #1 driving force is the Will to Meaning.

A powerful "Why?" puts willpower and motivation to utter shame.

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This best emotion for a powerful purpose

Hate can power a strong purpose. So can jealousy — vengeance is even more potent.

But a negative-driven purpose devours you in the process.

"Revenge… is like a rolling stone, which, when a man hath forced up a hill, will return upon him with greater violence and break those bones whose sinews gave it motion." — Jeremy Taylor

The strongest purpose stems from love — mothers are living proof of this.

While one mom saved her daughter from a black bear, another jumped from a second-story fire clutching her baby.

How can I forget my own mother?

She raised us two boys on her own in a new city with zero friends — and zero knowledge of the local language.

"It is love that makes the impossible possible." — Some wise soul

Will power is finite; motivation is fickle

1000s of aspiring writers start mincing words every year — only to go AWOL within a few months.

Only 5% make it past the first year — 1% past the second, and 0.1% past the fifth year.

I’m lazy and lack iron willpower — but I’m part of that 1%.

Because I love writing so much that I can’t not write. When I wasn’t getting paid, I wrote.

When I earned peanuts, I wrote.

When my views sucked, I wrote.

The greats in any field love their work to the point of obsession.

Phelps is more dolphin than human. Elon Musk pulls 80–90 hour work weeks. Ayodeji Awosika writes 5000+ words every d*** day.

Such love blasts motivation, fear, willpower, and uncertainty out of the water.

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Don’t do what you love, instead

Love what you do.

Find meaning in every frustrating errand, unruly person, and curveball in life.

"Do what you love, and you’ll never work a day in your life" sounds good, but it isn’t realistic.

Because external forces outside our control tend to control over 90% of our lives.

By loving what and whatever you do, you unlock infinite love. Everything and everyone becomes meaningful.

You’ll appreciate the dew drops glistening on a sunny morning as much as that 40% job hike you’ve long deserved.

By living a mindful life, you peel layer after layer of life — and reach your ultimate purpose.

I’m not preaching to you.

This article is a reminder to myself more than anything.

"Your purpose in life is to find your purpose and give your whole heart and soul to it." — Buddha

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Neeramitra Reddy is a Medium writer, Chief Editor/Columnist for In Fitness And In Health, and a columnist for Wholistique.

This article was originally published at Medium. Reprinted with permission from the author.