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How Being Under Public Pressure Can Help You Achieve Goals
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How Being Under Public Pressure Can Help You Achieve Goals

Having a goal is easy but staying motivated to achieve it and later to sustain the success is very difficult. Leo Babuta of Zen Habits suggests an interesting way to stay motivated, which is Positive Public Pressure method.


"While pressure is often seen as a bad thing ("I'm under too much pressure!"), if used properly it can actually be a good thing. It's important that pressure not be applied in too negative a way and too high an intensity. Keep things positive and at a manageable intensity, and things will move along nicely," he says in his blog .

Babauta himself used this technique to run his first marathon. He wrote a regular column in a local newspaper about his training towards the marathon. This gave him the necessary motivation to go on. Everywhere he went, people would say, "Hey, you're that marathon guy! How's the running going?"

In the blog, he suggests some examples of positive public pressure:

  • Announce to your colleagues that you are on a "No sugary snacks this week!" or "and report to them regularly on your progress.
  • Tell your friends about your goal and ask them to keep you accountable.
  • Post your goal on your blog and post regular updates.
  • Post pictures of yourself each day towards the goal.
Short term or long term, having a goal is very important and sometimes imperative. However, having a goal is only half the battle won as staying motivated through the process and finally achieving it is the most difficult part.

When you tell the world about your goal, put it all over social media, even if you lose motivation mid-way, you will have people asking about it. And the fear of giving up and becoming a reason for people to laugh will keep you going.

Whenever you decide to take up something, say a swimming course, go ahead and make it public. This way you will think twice before quitting. After all, nobody wants to feel humiliated.

You will have a higher success rate when you have outside support or motivation, when you are answerable to people. Announcing your goals to the world creates accountability, which is essential for success. Also, some good Samaritans will help you stay motivated. A research from Dominican University of California showed that those who told friends or family about their goals did better than those who didn't, and people who e-mailed their support team weekly progress updates did best of all.


(Also read: Procrastination And The Art Of Self-Motivation )

(Image Credit: Thinkstock)

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