Scientific Secrets for Self-Control

Course No. 1637
Professor C. Nathan DeWall, Ph.D.
University of Kentucky
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2.9 out of 5
68 Reviews
50% of reviewers would recommend this product
Course No. 1637
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Course Overview

We’ve all said it to ourselves at one point or another: “If only I had more willpower, I could do the things I really want to do.” Having the mental fortitude to reach your goals, whether they concern your job, your personal finances, your skills at a hobby, or even your waistline, seems forever unattainable. But here’s the truth: Greater willpower and lasting success actually well within your reach.

It all depends on an understanding of the science behind self-control. Long thought to be nothing but myth, the connection between your mind, your body, and your behaviors and emotions actually has powerful scientific evidence behind it. And once you’ve grasped the fundamentals of self-control and learned how to incorporate them into your personal life, you’ll find yourself in possession of a powerful tool for

  • becoming more goal oriented,
  • thinking more positively and constructively,
  • avoiding the negative health effects of emotional baggage and common stressors,
  • beating back self-doubt, and
  • facing the challenges of today and tomorrow with greater confidence in yourself.

Join Professor C. Nathan DeWall, an award-winning teacher and expert in self-control research, for Scientific Secrets for Self-Control. In just six engaging and inspirational lessons, you’ll get a chance to shatter the myths about willpower and replace them with verifiable science that will help make the seemingly unattainable finally possible. Packed with eye-opening studies, experiments, and exercises to strengthen your self-control when dealing with money, physical fitness, personal relationships, and more, this course will have you wondering why you ever doubted yourself.

Investigate Self-Control alongside an Expert

Whether you’re looking for new ways to resist temptation, make a strong first impression, or better control your emotions, Scientific Secrets for Self-Control is your guide to understanding—and mastering—this mysterious, frequently misunderstood subject. In clear and accessible language, Professor DeWall introduces you to the general theories behind self-control: what it is, how it works, and how you can take steps to improve it.

The individual lectures in this course cover a fascinating range of issues related to self-control. Among the topics you’ll have a chance to explore and investigate in the company of an expert:

  • How researchers discovered that delayed gratification can lead to better individual well-being in everything from higher self-worth to less sensitivity to rejection
  • One of the most influential theories about how self-control works—the limited resource model, which argues that self-control relies on limited energy that becomes depleted after use
  • How scientists discovered the link between the prefrontal cortex and aggression, and how people a risk for violent anger show abnormalities in that region of the brain
  • The argument that humans continue to stereotype other people into general groups (boys/girls, old/young, white/non-white, skinny/overweight) as a mental conservation strategy

Strengthen Your Self-Control Skills

Alongside groundbreaking scientific findings and research, you’ll get personal exercises, activities, and thought experiments you can use to practice strengthening your self-control skills to meet whatever specific goals you want to achieve. Each one of Professor DeWall’s lectures concludes with one or two exercises specific to a particular topic (such as aggression, first impressions, delayed gratification).

  • To psychologically recharge your depleted self-control energy, write down your core values and why they matter; self-affirmation is a great way to boost your self-control.
  • Make a plan before entering a tempting environment. For example, before going to a restaurant, look at the menu online so you can plan a strategy to avoid foods you shouldn’t eat.
  • Don’t make any major relationship decisions after you’ve experienced a long, taxing day. Having adequate self-control energy is crucial to making clear, rational decisions you won’t later regret.

These and other exercises are more than just engaging ways for you to practice self-control. They’re highly insightful examples of just how central self-control is to almost everything that you do in your life.

Finally Overcome Challenges and Obstacles

Professor DeWall is at the top of his game in Scientific Secrets for Self-Control, and you’ll quickly see why this popular instructor has earned such acclaim for his teaching and his ideas. The Association for Psychological Science has called Professor DeWall a “rising star” in psychological research, and he has received honors and awards including the Outstanding Teacher Award from the University of Kentucky’s College of Arts and Science and a SAGE Young Scholars Award from the Foundation for Personality and Social Psychology.

Add that caliber of instruction to this course’s helpful 3-D animations and use of green screen technology, and these lessons are a dynamic experience, particularly when enjoyed in visual formats.

By turns inspiring, supportive, informative, and enlightening, Professor DeWall has crafted a wonderful course that serves as an invaluable source of support for finally overcoming the obstacles in your life and reaching your true potential.

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6 lectures
 |  Average 30 minutes each
  • 1
    Why Is It So Hard to Do What We Should?
    Critical to understanding self-control: understanding why we often fail at it. First, Professor DeWall explains one of the most influential models about how self-control works, and the two classic experiments that tested this model. Then, learn why depleted energy causes us to show poor self-control and how our individual characteristics shape this energy. x
  • 2
    Self-Control Successes and Failures
    What are the secrets behind mastering self-control in your life? Why are specific individuals, from politicians to civil rights leaders, widely considered heroes of self-control? Why does it help to think of self-control as working like an internal thermostat? You’ll find answers to these provocative questions and more here. x
  • 3
    Marshmallows, Monkeys, and Mortality
    In this lecture, go inside the famous “marshmallow experiment” at Stanford University and its revelations about delayed gratification; learn how delaying gratification is important even for primates and dogs; and probe general differences in self-control and its effects on everything from mental health to wealth accumulation to an early death. x
  • 4
    Taming the Impulsive Beast
    Many critics and pundits argue that we live in the most peaceful time in history. So why is aggression still so prevalent around the world? Encounter several core components of self-control, two of which explain why most people commonly refrain from aggressive behavior and one of which explains why aggression still exists. x
  • 5
    First Impressions and Stereotypes
    Why do we tend to mimic one another during our social interactions? Why do we feel that we “gel” with certain people and seek out stronger relationships with those individuals? Why do interactions with different people deplete us of our self-control energy? Join Professor DeWall for an illuminating investigation of these and other questions. x
  • 6
    Romance, Finance, and Your Environment
    Learn how to apply your newfound knowledge of self-control to your romantic relationships, your financial decisions, and your surroundings. As you cover topics including recent studies on happiness and self-control in relationships and the importance of playing offense against your environment, you’ll gain invaluable skills that will promote stronger self-awareness. x

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Video DVD
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Your professor

C. Nathan DeWall

About Your Professor

C. Nathan DeWall, Ph.D.
University of Kentucky
Dr. C. Nathan DeWall is Professor of Psychology at the University of Kentucky. He earned an M.A. in Social Sciences from the University of Chicago, and an M.S. and a Ph.D. in Social Psychology from Florida State University. Winner of the Outstanding Teacher Award from the University of Kentucky's College of Arts and Science, Professor DeWall was named a ìrising starî in psychological research by the Association for...
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Scientific Secrets for Self-Control is rated 2.8 out of 5 by 66.
Rated 2 out of 5 by from I am a visual learner and just watching a person speak makes it difficulty for me to stay focused. I am finding my self dozing off when I try to watch it or I loose interest very quickly. I think that the use of more visual aids would be so much more dynamic and would help in keeping one interested. The person seems to be reading, and for that I rather get the booklet. for this day an age I feel, they scenery should be in par with the subject too. Mind you that I am highly interested in this subject and want to learn. Given my learning style, this production has not been helpful to me.
Date published: 2019-08-02
Rated 4 out of 5 by from An Interesting Course This was an interesting course. A lot of it was information I had read or heard in other places, but it was nice to have it all in one lecture series. It was just the right length to cover the material and give you pertinent information to notice and modify your personal habits to improve self control.
Date published: 2019-05-07
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Everyday Benefits! This course provided me with much practical information about how to conduct & control myself in daily interactions with family, friends, & work associates. I have gradually watched & listened to each of the lectures and intend to review each of them again in order to reinforce my understanding of the messages & lessons provided by Professor DeWall. Professor DeWall's knowledge of the topics & his presentation of such was outstanding in my mind. I particularly liked the valuable 'exercises' he offered.
Date published: 2019-04-26
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Fascinating understanding Will be repeating this one several times to be able to absorb all the information. Didn't catch that it came without a guidebook, so miss reading after listening to the lecture.
Date published: 2019-02-09
Rated 1 out of 5 by from Completely Useless. We are life-long learners and have been watching the Great Courses programs for many years. As a rule, we love them, but this one is by far the WORST course we have ever seen. The instructor talks too slowly, repeats himself constantly, is obsessed with recounting a zillion scientific studies, and cluttered up his presentation with too many meaningless stock photos. These no-brainer studies revealed "shocking" (the instructor's words) discoveries such as: people with more self-control commit less crime, exhibit less aggressive behavior, divorce less, have fewer extra-marital affairs, and do better managing their finances, etc. DUH! This course is taught at the fourth grade level. It is a complete waste of time. BTW - for some reason, the Teaching Company went cheapo on the lighting and backdrops for these 6-lectures programs. They look bizarre. And the stupid stock photos! We laughed all the way through the last 3 lectures.
Date published: 2018-12-21
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Good & Succinct I bought this on CD and listened to it in my commutes. In less than a week I was through the entire course. Self-control is a relatively new area of study in the field of social psychology. When I was getting my doctorate in the field in the late 1980’s, this wasn’t an area of study. I ended up working outside the field, but remain interested in it. This course builds on some basic theories I remember learning in grad school. The course is well-presented and laid out logically. Just wish there was more of it!
Date published: 2018-12-01
Rated 1 out of 5 by from Yawn This is the only course I purchased out of close to 100 courses, that I should have returned because I felt it was a waste of time and money.
Date published: 2018-09-02
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Practical strategies I tend to prefer these short courses (6 sessions).
Date published: 2018-07-23
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