Volition. 1.The act of using the will; exercise of the will as in deciding what to do. 2. a conscious or deliberate decision or choice thus made. 3. the power of faculty of using the will. (Webster’s Collegiate)
Volition is the ninth Attribute of Human Functioning in the list of 12 Attributes set forth by Human Development Gurus, Michael Murphy and George Leonard.
I keep referring to Michael Murphy and George Leonard as if everyone should know who they are. Most people don’t have the slightest idea who they are. Michael Murphy is the co-founder of the Esalen Institute on the Big Sur in California near Pebble Beach, Carmel, and points south of San Francisco. George Leonard was a member of the Board of Directors, and the former President of the Institute. The Esalen Institute was the cradle of the Personal Development Movement in the late 1960s and 1970s, and still hosts seminars and workshops in the Personal Development Movement today. Murphy wrote the over 800 page tome, The Future of the Human Body, and they co-wrote The Life We are Given, a much easier read. Leonard has written a number of excellent books about human performance including the best sellers, Mastery and The Ultimate Athlete.
Using volition is simple. It means being willing to make a choice. How does it relate to Health, Fitness and Personal Energy for Seniors? As long as we are willing to move our bodies and be mindful of what and how we eat, we will retain the ability to make our own choices and not require someone else make our choices for us. Freedom of choice is a major factor in keeping us identifying ourselves as “young”. When we slowly start to let others do things for us because we are “getting old”, we are giving up a bit of our independence. And it is our independence that we so jealously guard against losing.
Loss of the ability to live independently is the number one fear of older adults.
As with most things in life, how we choose to move, eat, breathe and think (our attitude about life) is key. We can choose to move our bodies and eat well, or we can stay sedentary and eat junk. We should be making the right choices while we can, before someone else has to do it for us.
We have become a less healthy Nation because of some of those choices. That’s why Volition is listed as one of the 12 Attributes of Human Functioning. It’s up to us as individuals to make the healthy choices, while we still have the ability to choose.
Thank you for reading.