Will in its common usage implies steeling oneself and using force to attain some goal. The Work tells us that this kind of struggle is a will related only to the small self and its earthly interests. In contrast, Real Will points to the opening of oneself to higher influences which then can reveal new possibilities and bring unity of being and understanding:

“What we ordinarily call ‘will’ is merely the result of all the forces that work on our attention and pull us this way and that.  ‘Real will’ is connected with the higher energy … in which there is the power of effective decision. This implies, at the very least, full power over our own organism. It implies much else besides … my ‘I’ should have power over my thoughts, feelings and sensations, and my bodily reactions in general.  For ordinary people, the impulse for their thoughts, feelings and bodies comes from their desires, their attractions and aversions. These are, of course, held within the limits imposed by training and habit; but, so far as the setting in motion or activation of all these bodily processes is concerned, the active principles are the forces of desire and aversion, attraction and repulsion. In so far as these control us, we control nothing, for they arise without our will or intention”  (J.G. Bennett, Is There Life on Earth? p. 59).

“Real will comes from above, from a higher level. What does higher mean? Where we see one thing at our level, at a higher level a million things exist. We imagine Will as inflexible but we have to conceive that Real Will is infinitely flexible and discerning and ultimately contains all things and so has direction towards fullness. … Real Will is full of new meaning. It is not the absence of things, the negation and denial of doing things. Its real nature does not consist in the words: ‘I will not.’ ‘I will understand more’ is a better formulation. … Realizing this, you begin to see that Real Will means great meaning and great understanding and great flexibility and a great amount of going against what you thought best. This requires that active patience that the Work demands and which becomes so easy to understand once you cease to have illusions about your self and your knowledge and your right judgments and all the rest of the lies that we try to live by. Patience of this sort is called in the Work the Mother of Will”  (Maurice Nicoll, Commentaries, “Commentary on Will,” July 29, 1944, Vol. 2, pp. 490-491).

“… the object of all real esotericism is to connect Man with the Will of God and to break him from his own self-will.  If one does this Work from a good spirit, if one tries to work on oneself as regards non-identifying, non-internal considering, etc., if one tries to remember oneself in the sense of the Work, knowing from its diagrams that there is something higher that one can touch, then it is possible to speak of what Will means.  Will consists in feeling finer influences and finer influences reaching us from a higher level as forces coming down the Ray of Creation” (Ibid, p. 479).

Real Will is closely connected with the Work idea and practice of  external considering, and aids in the keeping of our aims.