Many people suffer various addictions due to a lack of will power. Smoking, overeating, etc. are problems that can, and have, been defeated by force of will. Yet, there are people who try to break their habits, and fail, because they lack will power. I have come up with a mildly unrealistic solution that is absolutely guaranteed to work.
Might as well get to the point. The solution is to hire one or two people to follow you and force you to quit. There would be some legal papers necessary for this to work because you would have to give the person permission to follow you everywhere, and maybe even restrain you if necessary. But even so, it wouldn’t be much more difficult than hiring a personal bodyguard. They’re just guarding you against yourself.
Despite the fact that this solution is a little extreme and silly, it’s guaranteed to work. How many people have spent tons of money on pills, patches, fad diets, hypnotists, and other things that don’t work? How many people have tried to go cold turkey and have nothing to show for it? Depending on the addiction, and depending on the person, I can’t imagine this solution ever taking more than a few months, max. For most people I see it taking just a few weeks. I also can’t imagine that the success rate wouldn’t be 100%.
Let’s say you are an alcoholic. You hire the person. First thing, they come and remove all alcohol from your house. They search everything, even your body. They then proceed to follow you 24/7. You might need two people, with one working the night shift. These people simply do not let you drink any alcohol, even in the bathroom. If necessary, they may go so far as to physically restrain you.
Obviously in some cases there may be withdrawal symptoms. In those cases, you will just suffer through them until they end. If they get really bad, the person can bring you in for medical attention to fix you up, rather than letting you fail.
Once the pain of withdrawal has subsided, they can watch you for a little while longer just to make sure. They can even slowly disengage just to make sure. Maybe after they think you’re ready, you can switch from 24/7 monitoring to random spot-checks. They just randomly show up anytime and any place to make sure you haven’t un-quit. If you have, then you return to full-on watching.
A side bonus of this is that you will hopefully make a new friend, much like rich and/or famous people become friends with bodyguards, drivers, maids, nannies, or other servants.
The biggest problem I see with this idea, besides the obvious legal unrealisms, is the price. The bare minimum cost is the minimum wage times twenty four hours per day. Even if this service existed, it would be priced out of range for those people who probably need it most.
However, the high price is advantageous in some ways. The cost can act as an incentive to quit and stay quit. The sooner you break your habit, the sooner you stop paying for 24/7 service. If you get caught by a random spot check later on, it’s going to cost you a lot of money all over again. Also, if you paid a huge sum of money to quit, and then you un-quit, it will all have been spent for naught. Thinking of that might aid people’s will power.
Thinking more realistically for a moment, I do think that this could actually work. What I would suggest is that someone do a scientific study, and use the research budget to hire these watchers. Compare the rate of successful quitters after X amount of time to other addiction curing methods. If it really is super effective, then we really should consider turning it into an available option, especially since it should create a lot of new jobs.
Lastly, there is one way to try this method out right now. Find a friend, family member, co-worker, etc., and get them to watch you. Maybe get one or more people who also have bad habits, and simply agree to mutually watch each other. My guess it that this will work very well because people will try very hard to catch you. It will be almost like a fun game of hide and seek.
It’s obvious that there is a serious will power deficiency in our society. If we can not figure out a way for people to build up the necessary will within themselves, then perhaps the solution is to borrow the will of others.
I find this fascinating, but I think the success rate may depend on the habit in question. For example; I am a sex addict.
Which begs: Would these people be vetted, bonded, etc? (armed, immunized …)