Free Will is a popular idea, but in reality not nearly as achievable as we would like.

First, nature controls many aspects of your life: your genes, how you look, male/female, your wiring, predispositions, psychological traits. I would say this accounts for 40% of what you do, who you are. Then you have habits and training from youth which have become patterns that are all but impossible to overcome. Give that 25%. Add legal laws, social responsibilities and we're already at 80% determination.

Another big problem is just being aware of what is going on around you. Here are a couple of examples. Ever misplace your keys or iphone even though two minutes before you had them in your hand? Here's another example. I have an infrared floodlight. You can't see it at all at night. But when you look through the night vision scope its lit up bright as day. We just don't sense a lot of what is going on around us. Do you know what your wife is thinking? Here's another example. Can you control what and how much you eat?

Okay, we're up to 90% of what you are and do is controlled or you are unaware of it. You have all these emotions pushing you around. Then add in your wife, kids, work. That leaves us with 3% free will to do as we wish. Sure you can overcome some of it, some of the time, but not many people can, and its really really hard to overcome any of it.

If we could, it would be easy to buy low and sell high. It would be easy to be slim and buff. It's not. Free will is more of an illusion and philosophical concept than a practical reality. As Ralph mentions - patience and nerve. Overcoming the pain of exercising free will. These are part of the elements of free will. It's hard, if not impossible.


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