What's your reward?*

Tuesday, 22 October 2019, By Jo Hurst


For many clients the idea of rewarding a change in behaviour over time encourages consistency and improves the chance of habits being formed. Incentive Theory has been around since the 1940s and focuses on the pull towards a reward as well as the push away from negative consequences. It can help stop bad habits as well as build new routines and behaviours.

To be honest we have been subtly doing this throughout our lives although not always selecting an appropriate reward.

Have you ever studied hard for a good result knowing that would help you achieve a good grade?

Have you ever prepared a great dinner to impress your friends and enjoyed the comments and compliments that came your way?

As a child did you tidy your room to get your pocket money?

For some people intrinsic motivation and feeling great is enough to get them establishing new habits however, at the start especially it is important to acknowledge a more tangible external reward may be useful.

The reward needs to be important and specific to the individual - someone can't tell you what your reward is - YOU have to decide.

It has to be realistic - will you actually achieve your reward or is it too difficult or expensive that you give up easily and sabotage your ability to complete the task?

Finally, the reality is you need to have ownership of it and take responsibility for making it happen. Whether it's a life goal, weight loss, career or a financial goal If it's meant to be, it's up to me.

*Disclaimer: Individual results vary based on agreed goals. Click here for details.

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