A new study has got bad news for the iron-willed - those who believe they can exercise restraint very skilfully are more likely to give into temptation.
The research, led by psychologist Loran Nordgren, of the Kellogg School of Management in Illinois, USA, found that individuals who think they are strong willed are more likely to go into situations where their resolve is truly tested, reports The Daily Express.
AdvertisementThe study, which looked into humans' ability to control impulses such as greed, drug craving and sexual arousal, implies that many people who succumb to temptation and cannot give up smoking or drinking, eat too much or indulge in an affair, are those who falsely believe they have an iron will.
In the study, Nordgren, who worked with colleagues in Amsterdam, found many people over-estimated the amount of temptation they could handle.
"We expose ourselves to more temptation than is wise and have millions of people suffering with obesity, addictions and other unhealthy lifestyles," he said.
The study will be published in the Psychological Science journal.