#525. The Science of Motivation | Ayelet Fishbach
There are all sorts of ways to struggle with getting things done. Maybe you’re a procrastinator, maybe you’re somebody whose energy flags in the middle of a project, maybe you’re too stubborn and don’t know when to quit, or maybe you’re somebody who sets too many goals and gets burned out. Whatever your situation, we all struggle with motivation. The good news is that there’s a whole crew of scientists who study best practices for getting things done, including today’s guest, Ayelet Fishbach, PhD.
Fishbach is one of the most eminent players in the field. She is the Jeffrey Breakenridge Keller Professor of Behavioral Science and Marketing at the University of Chicago, Booth School of Business. She is also the author of Get It Done: Surprising Lessons from the Science of Motivation.
In this episode we talk about:
- The crucial first step of setting goals
- How to pick the right goals for you
- Whether it’s more effective to have a goal that is positive – where you’re aiming to achieve something specific – or negative – where you’re aiming to stop doing something
- Whether to-do lists work
- Whether incentives work
- Best practices for monitoring your progress
- The importance of celebrating milestones
- The importance of negative feedback
- Why the 10,000 steps per day goal makes motivational sense even though it’s been proven to be scientifically arbitrary
- And how to know when to let go of a goal
Where to find Ayelet Fishbach online:
Other Resources Mentioned:
- Harnessing the Small Victories: Goal Design Strategies for a Mobile Calorie and Weight Loss Tracking Application
- Reference-Dependent Preferences: Evidence from Marathon Runners
- Climbing the goal ladder: How upcoming actions increase level of aspiration.