JimJimJimJim Posted October 7, 2013 Share Posted October 7, 2013 Jim Marshall (not a doctor) said ... When it comes to avoiding temptation, It turns out that the language you use to talk to yourself is important. "I can't have sweet snacks between meals!" would probably be more effective as: "I don't have sweet snacks between meals!" Below is an extract from a Lifehacker article that shows a surprising difference. .. end Jim The researchers designed a new study by asking 30 working women to sign up for a “health and wellness seminar.” All of the women were told to think of a long-term health and wellness goal that was important to them. Then, the researchers split the women into three groups of 10. Group 1 was told that anytime they felt tempted to lapse on their goals they should “just say no.” This group was the control group because they were given no specific strategy. Group 2 was told that anytime they felt tempted to lapse on their goals, they should implement the “can’t” strategy. For example, “I can’t miss my workout today.” Group 3 was told that anytime they felt tempted to lapse on their goals, they should implement the “don’t” strategy. For example, “I don’t miss workouts.” For the next 10 days, each woman received an email asking to report her progress. They were specifically told, “During the 10-day window you will receive emails to remind you to use the strategy and to report instances in which it worked or did not work. If the strategy is not working for you, just drop us a line and say so and you can stop responding to the emails.” Here’s what the results looked like 10 days later: Group 1 (the “just say no” group) had 3 out of 10 members who persisted with their goals for the entire 10 days. Group 2 (the “can’t” group) had 1 out of 10 members who persisted with her goal for the entire 10 days. Group 3 (the “don’t” group) had an incredible 8 out of 10 members who persisted with their goals for the entire 10 days. The words that you use not only help you to make better choices on an individual basis, but also make it easier to stay on track with your long-term goals. ... Heidi Grant Halvorson is the director of the Motivation Science Center at Columbia University. Here’s how she explains the difference between saying “I don’t” compared to “I can’t”: “I don’t” is experienced as a choice, so it feels empowering. It’s an affirmation of your determination and willpower. “I can’t” isn’t a choice. It’s a restriction, it’s being imposed upon you. So thinking “I can’t” undermines your sense of power and personal agency. More examples and the full article on Lifehacker here: A Scientific Guide to Effectively Saying No Link to comment Share on other sites More sharing options...
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