One Easy Trick to Resist Temptation

You spent all day watching Jersey Shore? That’s great! Facebook sucked up three hours you’ll never get back? Fantastic!This holiday season, procrastination is the neat little bow on your have-a-happy-holiday package. It can help you survive the holidays without overspending, overeating or otherwise overindulging every last stressed-out impulse.Perhaps you’re a little confused: Procrastination is good now?QUIZ: Feeling Stressed?In certain cases, yes. A new study found that when we’re faced with a choice about whether or not to indulge a pleasure-seeking impulse (“I need that sparkly dress”), postponement—putting the activity off until later—allows the impulse to fade and encourages self-control.Typically, temptation is a give in or give up situation. We either deprive ourselves of the indulgence entirely or succumb to the impulse immediately. Neither is very helpful. We’re more likely to regret an impulsive choice, and resisting temptation strains our willpower, leaving us more likely to overindulge later. (Been there, done that, right?)“When people deprive themselves [of food, for example], the craving and desire to eat is still there,” says the study’s co-author, Nicole Mead, Ph.D. “In contrast, when we have [study] participants postpone eating dessert in our experiments, the desire and craving to eat goes away.” The same applies to impulse buys, like that expensive purse you’re eyeing or the latest techie gadget.WATCH VIDEO:

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