Friday, April 24, 2009

Whisker Goals

Sure, I procrastinate, but in my job I also get the opportunity to help other people overcome procrastination. I enjoyed a column recently called “Time to Aim Lower - Why Tough Circumstances Call For Smaller Goals.” By Dan and Chip Heath.

This quote from the authors of Made To Stick has definitely stuck in my mind:

“We’re all used to hearing about stretch goals, and when you feel empowered, stretch goals are useful ambition teasers. But when you’re overwhelmed, stretch goals are a recipe for paralysis.

Michael Phelps needed a stretch goal. Julie (overweight patient in the book One Small Step Can Change Your Life) needed a whisker goal, a target that was a hairsbreadth away from the status quo. We need more modest steps because they help us get past the “start-up costs” – the apprehension and fear - that deter us from doing the tasks we hate.”

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