Research indicates that individuals have limits in terms of how much they can self-regulate, or exert willpower/self-control (this applies to anything from dieting to paying attention in class).  When the willpower tank is empty, the ability to exert self-control and apply effort is negatively impacted.  Individuals who have been in situations that require a lot of self-control will be more likely to fail and resist immediate gratification in subsequent time periods. This is not uncommon for students with ADHD, who may have an empty tank by the time they are expected to work on their homework. Research has shown that the tank can be filled back up with the following interventions:
    • Routine physical exercise
    • Taking 10 minute breaks during strenuous situations requiring greater amounts of self regulation
    • Relaxing or mediating for at least 3 minutes after these situations
    • Visualizing rewards or outcomes
    • Arranging for periodic small rewards throughout the tasks
    • Experiencing positive emotions
    • Engaging in self-affirming statements
    • Consuming glucose rich beverages during the task