Determination and willpower. How much do you have?

Determination and willpower are often fueled by emotions.

Our willpower and determination are often fueled by our emotions. To increase your willpower, examine the emotions that motivate you to take action and get you excited about succeeding. This is very like knowing what motivates you, which I posted about last week.

But before we go further, let me add this. Just because we are Christians doesn’t mean we are automatically more determined or have more willpower than the next person. Christians are people first and, as such, need to learn and grow in areas outside what we normally consider spiritual. Although, I might argue that determination and willpower are definitely within the spiritual realm.


Reduce your stress and negativity to help increase your positive outlook and tenacity. Since stress tends to suck the life out of you and your emotions, take steps to keep your stress level at a minimum to gain a more optimistic and healthy frame of mind. 

Determination and willpower take a lot of energy. Don’t waste your energy stressing out about things you can’t control.

What is your motive?

Your determination is frequently based on how motivated you are to succeed. To give your determination a boost, try strengthening your motives for achieving your goals. Of course, to do that, you have to know what they are.

Remember, though, your motives are different from your motivators. A motivation is like the carrot at the end of the stick. It’s what keeps us heading toward our goal. But your motives have more to do with your integrity.

Are your motives pure? Do you have a mixed agenda that only you know about? Sometimes we do things to get something in return, quid pro quo. That’s OK in some situations, but there should be lots of times we expect nothing in return for a good deed.

That’s the best motivator, wanting nothing in return.

The Bible teaches our motives are supposed to be pure and birthed in a heart that is wholly devoted to God.

Fear impacts willpower and determination

Fear is another thing that has a negative effect on your level of determination. When you refuse to let fear get in the way of achieving the goals and success you want, you are more likely to react in a brave manner, which increases your rate of success.

Fear is ok when it helps us avoid or protect someone else from danger. But fear usually eats away at our willpower. We feel weak, and thus our determination lags as well. That’s usually because we are concentrating on our fear and not our goal.

For example, fear weakens our willpower when it comes to eating. We get so afraid we might gain a pound that we end up bingeing to conquer that fear. Overeating is a common way many of us deal with fear and anxiety. I added anxiety because it’s impossible to fear without anxiety, just as it is impossible to feel anxiety without fear.

Fear is something we bring to God. Scripture is full of instructions about dealing with our fear which can only mean God knew the human condition would include fear.

picture of owl with eyes open wide in fea/willpower and determination

So emotions, motives, and fear affect our willpower and determination. We must keep our emotions realistic, our motives pure, and recognize, but not give in to, our fears.

I am a very determined person by nature; I also have a lot of willpower. Except when I don’t. Right? We’re all like this. But there are those areas I am NOT determined, nor do I have any willpower. So I need to apply these principles myself.

God bless and have a wonderful day.