The Science Behind Reaching Your Goals
Science explains why it’s so hard to reach our goals. Many adults have goals but somewhere between setting them and accomplishing them, we lose our way. This is why New Year’s resolutions famously fail. In fact, New Years Resolutions fail 92% of the time. That’s why understanding how goals work and the psychology that keeps us from getting there will help us reach the goals we set for ourselves.
Melissa Fuesting of Motivation Student Nation Podcast knows how to make us connect our daily practices to our end goals and is here to show us how to do it. Some of the psychology you’ll take away from this episode is understanding self-determination theory, intrinsic goals, and imposters syndrome.
Why The Reason “Why” is So Important in Motivation
Have you ever done a task or taken a job or class that was boring but you needed it as part of a larger goal? Maybe you needed the extra money to buy a new car or maybe you knew a degree would give you access to higher paying jobs.
The better able you are to connect your daily activities to your overall goals the more motivation you’ll have to perform well in your daily tasks.
If You’re Having Trouble Finding Your “Why”
In the podcast Melissa cites some experiments she’s done called “Building the ladder of why’s” it goes a little something like this:
The stronger your overall reason for reaching your goals the better chance you have to reach them. All motivation, however, isn’t created equal.
Types of Motivation
Extrinsic Motivation: can get you through short-term goals but don’t tend to last long because you don’t value the task or connect it to your long-term goals.
Intrinsic motivation: striving toward a goal for personal satisfaction or achievement.
Comparative Performance Goals vs Learning Goals
Comparative performance goals are about being the best at something for bragging rights, it’s easy to lose motivation to reach those goals if the task no longer becomes important to us.
In contrast, Learning goals compare you to your past work. You’re motivated by the process of learning new things rather than competing with others. Learning goals are a form of intrinsic motivation.
Failure is an Important Part of Success
It’s hard to learn from success. Through failure, you get an idea of what works and what doesn’t. Failing is an opportunity to reevaluate what you what you’re doing and choose to take a new course of action or give up.
What we can do to achieve our goals
- Get Crystal Clear on what goal we need to achieve
- Connect our daily tasks to our goals
- Enjoy the process of learning something new and learn from the mistakes you have along the way.
To help me deliver the best show possible
Here is a list of resources mentioned in this episode: