Want to be more motivated to stick to your goals? Here’s the secret: Don’t focus on your goals.
The way we motivate ourselves is totally WRONG. It’s actually the OPPOSITE of what most of us do.
Researchers Fishbach & Choi discovered that setting a goal gives us a brief initial motivation boost, but it doesn’t last for long. They found people who are most successful SWITCH their focus away from long-term goals and instead focus on the IMMEDIATE BENEFIT.
– exercisers naturally do about 10 minutes more on a treadmill & feel more energized after a workout if they focus on how good they feel right away rather than a long-term goal of weight loss.
– flossers are more likely to floss when they focus on how fresh & clean their teeth feel right away instead of focusing on a long-term goal of preventing gum disease.
Most of us focus on how great the outcome is going to be (weight loss/marathon finish line/big promotion) and, true, it gives us an INITIAL motivation boost. HOWEVER, if all we do is focus on that goal, motivation burns out. Humans aren’t hard wired to care so much about the future.
Instead we have to SWITCH our focus…We need to focus on what pleasure we feel NOW (proud of ourself for making a great food choice, better mood for going on a run, having fun creating a graphic for a newsletter). Focus on the daily, immediate pleasure you get from doing daily tasks/habits. It’s the secret to long-term motivation & ultimate success.