According to a recent MSNBC article, “blabbing about your New Year’s diet — or whatever your big 2012 goal may be — may hurt your chances of actually doing whatever it is you intend to do this year.” Psychology studies identify this phenomenon as a “social reality.” Basically, when we talk about doing something the social rewards of the effort can “trick” the brain into thinking your goal has already been achieved. In other words, talking about your goals in front of other people can make us less likely to actually achieve them.
One of the most recent studies on this topic was conducted by New York University professor Peter Gollwitzer and colleagues from German and UK universities. The experiment observed 63 psychology students, “asking them whether they intended to study videotaped therapy sessions in order to become better clinical psychologists.” For those who chose to watch the footage (approximately half), experimenter’s acknowledged their intention – the other students went unacknowledged. Then the students were given the chance to watch a video. Those whose intentions were not acknowledged in the interview watched the video for longer than the students who had been recognized.
If you have no professional help, like a certified personal trainer or a nutritionist, to help guide you to your weight loss goal, you may want to talk to a friend or family member for encouragement. If this is the case, you may want to make sure to frame your fitness or weight loss conversation appropriately. Hold yourself accountable for your work by talking about your progress and your goals – instead of resting on your laurels for completed milestones.
Source: MSNBC.com “Should you keep your New Year’s diet a secret?”