I have a love hate relationship with the word “moderation”.
For the most part, I think the word is problematic and the phrase “everything in moderation” needs to go.
Moderation assumes that you know what either extremes look like and consciously teeter between them. Moderation assumes that you know how to self-regulate and that you can most (read: all) of the time. Moderation assumes that both excess and scarcity are problems and IT is the only solution.
Moderation logic is deeply flawed and we need to talk about it.
NO ONE ACTUALLY KNOWS HOW TO PRACTICE MODERATION
I think what people mean when they say they strive for moderation is that sometimes when they are tempted to do something, they fight back, and every now and then, they win.
That’s great, but there’s two critical problems:
(1) willpower is finite and not a very effective long-term strategy and
(2) chances are you are unaware how often you actually win your internal battles
>> moderate your sugar consumption and avoid weight gain.
>> moderate your spending and you’ll avoid debt.
>> moderate your screen time use and you’ll be more productive, creative, and present.
The problem is that we usually fight temptation (to a sh!t pile of sugar, spend on frivolous things, turn off devices) with willpower and if there is one thing that you should know by now: thin bandwidth, low resiliency and long run willpower is no match for temptation.
You can only fight for so long before your emotional energy is completely spent and your ability to make good decisions is exhausted.
And you give in.
When it comes to fighting excess, the answer is to create systems that demand fewer decisions from you.
Create systems and build habits that encourage you to make the choices you want to make – on autopilot.