Note from Sarah: Thank you Jason Seib for another amazing post!
I have had some epiphanies in my research lately and I’m anxious to share them with you. One of the most eye opening ones for me is the subject of today’s post. Once again, we need to begin with a question, albeit one that sounds a little confusing on its surface:
Are you trying to feel better emotionally, or are you actually pursuing a goal?
Don’t answer until I explain. I recently stumbled upon a fantastic paper titled The False-Hope Syndrome: Unfulfilled Expectations of Self-Change, and I hope you will read the entire thing, but one particular concept jumped out at me. It begins with this:
Merely committing to a diet may make people feel more in control, more responsible for their weight, and, potentially, more likely to achieve their goals than they felt before making the commitment.
This all sounds great until we fully understand the following:
Unfortunately, however, the optimism and positive affect that accompany the beginning of a change attempt tend to dissipate with the vicissitudes of actually working to effect the change.