DO I HAVE A WILL? George Ainslie describes some methods of binding yourself to resist temptation. One way is to establish a rule of behavior (such as “I only have desert after dinner.”) We could speak of using the rule –and not making exceptions–as exercising will power. In fact, Ainslie describes this kind of intertemporal bargaining as “your will”: “The most robust idea is that will comes from turning individual choices into a matter of principle.” Ainslie says, “Intertemporal cooperation—your will—is most threatened by rationalizations that permit exceptions to the choice at hand and is most stabilized by finding bright lines to serve as criteria from what you’ll view as cooperation.” It is easier to follow a rule never to drink alcohol than a rule to drink only in moderation. The enemy of the will is the exception to the rule—“just this once.”

This entry was posted in Uncategorized. Bookmark the permalink.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.