On Bauer Business Focus – a conversation on how to better manage temptation with Houston Public Media News 88.7 Business Reporter Andrew Schneider.
C. T. Bauer College of Business marketing Professor Vanessa Patrick stopped by Bauer Business Focus to discuss her and her co-author’s research on managing temptation by using a method of indefinite postponement.
“If we keep relying on willpower to restrain ourselves from temptations, we will ultimately succumb,” Patrick explained. “Our strategy says, tell yourself you can have it later, and the chances that you will sustain that decision over the long-term becomes higher.”
According to Patrick, postponing giving into a desire to an indefinite time, rather than a specific future, is crucial. For example, if you tell yourself you will wait to eat a dessert until dinnertime, you will most likely eat the dessert at dinnertime. But telling yourself you will simply eat it later is more likely to keep you from indulging at all.
As Patrick explained, “It’s quite important that when we put off the temptation, we put it off to some indefinite time in the future.”
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