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Setting a goal is easy, but when it comes actually achieving them that’s where 90% of people fail and drop the goal altogether. Good thing we’ve come across these awesome Goal Hacks that’s all you need to hear to get you back n track fulfilling those goals you have lined up. These goal hacks can become your foundation and checklist when you have an important goal you want to achieve at the moment.
The biggest enemy of any goal is excessive positive fantasising. Research on fantasising in goal-setting shows that positive fantasies are associated with failure to get a job, find a partner, pass an exam or get through surgery. Those whose fantasies were more negative did better. Don’t experience the future positively before you achieve it.
The reason we don’t achieve our goals is lack of commitment.
One powerful psychological technique to increase commitment is mental contrasting. This involves entertaining a positive fantasy but then pouring a bucket of cold reality over it (follow this link for the details). It’s hard, but research shows people really respond to it.
Visualise process NOT outcome
We’re all susceptible to the planning fallacy: that’s thinking all will go smoothly when it won’t (and hardly ever does). Visualising the process of reaching your goal, helps focus attention on the steps you need to take. It also helps reduce anxiety.
Avoid the what-the-hell effect
When we miss our target, we can fall foul of the what-the-hell-effect. It’s best known to dieters who go over their daily calorie limit. Reasoning the target is now gone, they think ‘what-the-hell’, and start eating too much of all the wrong food.
Goals that are vulnerable to the what-the-hell-effect are generally short-term and inhibitional (when you’re trying to stop doing something). The effect can be avoided by setting goals that are long-term and acquisitional. Find out more about the what-the-hell effect.
Reject robotic behaviour
Often our behaviour is robotic. We do things not because we’ve really thought about it, but because it’s a habit or we’re unconsciously copying other people (e.g. Bargh et al., 2001). This type of behaviour can be an enemy of goal striving. Ask yourself whether what you are doing is really getting you closer to your goal.
Want to see more Goal Hacks? Check out PsyBlog.