I have a confession to make. I’m not the fittest person on the planet, and I’m not a fan of physical exercise. But as part of my commitment to bettering myself, I decided to get fit (or fitter). From all the different sports, that I could have chosen, I chose to run. I picked it as it requires the least amount of preparation. Just so you know, I don’t like running, but I stuck with it. It’s been a week since that commitment and I still have the motivation.
Running was always a struggle for me. I got out of breath pretty soon and my legs got sore the next day. But now it is getting easier and easier. Now, I can say I somewhat enjoy it. I noticed something more as well. Seeing the physical finish line of a running session is something that I find really motivating. It gives a burst of energy and hope, that the next break will come soon. As my eyes focus on the finish line the exercise feels easier.
I thought I’m not the first person to recognise this, there must be a study that tested this theory. It turns out, there is one from a social psychologist named Emily Balcetis. She did research on the correlation between motivation and visible goals.
The goal of the research was to understand how people with different physical fitness see exercise as a challenge. They found that motivated people saw exercise easier despite their physical fitness. Furthermore focusing on the finish line actually made them feel that the workout was less challenging. They named this method Eyes On The Prize. Balcetis’ work on the subject is explained in this video.
Although these studies were focusing on physical exercise only, the same principle can be applied to achieving goals. As I mention in my article How to never lose focus of your goals, a visual reminder can be highly beneficial when working on a project or goals. These visual reminders should focus on the finish line, AKA the end results. Do you have a visual reminder of what you what to achieve? If not, make one! Create a picture, draw a drawing or mould a clay figure. These are some basic examples, feel free to come up with creative solutions.
Have you ever noticed, that keeping your focus on the end result made any task easier? I’m really interested if you did, so please share it with me in a comment. I hope this article will help you on your path of bettering yourself. If it does, subscribe to our newsletter, and follow us on twitter. Have a nice day and keep you eyes on the prize!
About the authorGabor Hosszu is the founder and head article writer of Goals Infinite. Being passionate about personal development and helping others were the main reasons he launched this site. By trade Gabor is a mechanical engineer. His hobbies include being a chilli farmer, a video game nerd and a wannabe beer expert.