Why Setting Goals Is Not The Answer To Success

Have you ever reached a goal you’ve worked hard for and expected to feel a burst of elation only to feel a little dissatisfied? Or that you just immiediately increased the target to another goal?

In this short clip Adam Alter, author of ‘Irresistible: The Rise of Addictive Technology and the Business of Keeping Us Hooked’  argues that goals are never fulfilling and what you should focus on is implementing ‘systems’ instead.

Through the example of smart watches and fit bits Alter describes how people initially feel good about hitting a daily exercise goal. Yet soon the number becomes hollow and they

 

 

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have to keep increasing their exercise target in order to feel satisfaction or to feel that they’re achieving their goal. Otherwise they feel like their failing and eventually give up because they feel it’s not worth it.

This is an unsustainable way of achievement and Alter argues the problem with goals is they’re based on negative feedback, “if you don’t hit this goal you’re losing”

Systems on the other hand are based on a positive feedback mechanism. For example a blogger instead of saying “I’m going to write a post a day” can instead adopt a system of spending 40 minutes writing a day. Instead of focusing on getting a specific number of posts your focusing on becoming a better writer and saying

“Here’s my system, 40 minutes of writing a day and whatever number of words I get I’m achieving”

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Professor Decimates US Politicians on Taxing the Poor over Billionaires

 

I’ve featured Professor Mark Blyth a number of times here. In this wonderful clip he eloquently explains why The U.S government:

“does not have a spending problem it has a revenue problem.

Blyth magnificently debunks myths around U.S debt, government spending and the reasons for exponential growth in wealth inequality.

Why when Corporate profits have never been higher, the banks have been bailed out by the workers yet their million dollar bonuses sore is providing people with healthcare when they’re sick such a controversial, extreme idea?

One startling statistic shows just how much the rich have gotten richer.  Forbes Rich list’s richest person in the US was worth $2 billion in 1982, in 2015 the richest person in the US is worth $76 billion. While over 50% of Americans (150 million people) earn less than $30,000 a year

We have seen the largest transfer of wealth from the average citizen to the top 0.1% in human history.

What Makes You A “Good” Person?

In this riveting video Robert Sapolsky examines moral failure or people’s inability to resist temptation from a neurological perspective.

Is being “good” a question of training our impulses to do the right thing? Using reason to navigate our way through life’s temptations and arriving at a morally good answer?

Maybe. However this video points to research that suggests rather than trusting reason of “oh I should never cheat in an exam because X, Y and Z reason” that being in a state of mind of “you don’t cheat. fullstop.”  is far more likely to yield success in the long term.

This is an interesting analysis of the inner processes and dialogue of the brain when presented with moral challenges and how we can achieve desired result.

 

What do you think..?

What Makes A Writer Happy?

In this interesting piece, Simon Cade analyses the artistic process and asks what are the things that make a content creator happy.

How do you filter out critics? How do you begin to trust your intuition and progress as an artist? Cade argues the key to being a happy creator is interpretation.

It is how you interpret self doubt, discontent with your work, or criticism from others that defines your growth as a creator. And that the most successful and happy artists are not those who never fail but those who never quit.

What Would Elon Musk Be Working On If He Was 22?

Inventor, Entrepreneur and Englineer discusses what he views as the most important work to be doing if he was a young person in 2017.

Musk has been at the centre of the conversation around artificial intelligence and sustainable energy consumption over the past 15 years. He is ranked the 21st most influential people in the world and his current company SpaceX are working on a project to eventually allow humans to colonise Mars.

Wikipedia Proves Fake News Hysteria is Bullsh*t

Katherine Maher, executive director at the Wikimedia Foundation discusses how Wikipedia went from a site loaded with errors and false information to the world’s trusted open encyclopedia.

Through the process of constant self improvement and a dedication to ensuring accurate information, Wikipedia shows that sorting fact from fiction is a much easier job than has been made out from public figures such as Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump.

Maher suggsts that the way news is consumed and how information is spread is more the problem than fake news itself.  It is the profiteering, commercial model of clickbait and stretching of truth as companies and individuals fight for our screen time that must be seen as the focal point of fake news.

She states the product design is flawed and the major providers need to take a stand on the way information is presented to the consumer and allowing quick resolution to removing what is fake, just as Wikipedia has done:

“When I’m looking at a Facebook feed I don’t know why information is being presented to me. Is it because it’s timely? Is it because it’s relevant? Is it because it’s trending, popular, important?
All of that is stripped out of context so it’s hard for me to assess: is it good information that I should make decisions on? Is it bad information that I should ignore? And then you think about the fact that all of the other sort of heuristics that people use to interpret information, where does it come from? Who wrote it? When was it published? All of that is obscured in the product design as well.”

So does Fake News really have the problem or is this an obfuscation of what is really causing the spread of misinformation?

How to Stop Wasting Your Days on Facebook

It’s an addiction. A stimulation we crave. Yet it can really inhibit the quality of our lives and ability to focus on hard tasks. Most of us would admit we spend way too much time aimlessly drifting through newsfeeds but how do we beat it?

Author Charles Duhigg believes we must treat it like any other ingrained habit. Accept that we have a dependency and slowly try and wean ourselves off.

This can be done by scheduling timeslots in the day when we will use social media and removing automatic notification alerts that we don’t need and slowly start creating a new habit of focus.