TU17: The Biology of Motivation and Habits – Why We Drop the Ball

by | Jan 11, 2017 | Brain Science, Emotional Intelligence, Episodes, Neuroscience, Personal Growth, Relationships

Show Notes

Understanding Research Behind Motivation and Habits

Even when it is so important to us, why is it that it’s so hard to follow through when we are trying to make or break habits? In this episode, we discuss research and biology around why it is so hard to change our patterns and stick to the goals we set for ourselves.

How we view our goals significantly impacts how we behave and the decisions we make. In general, people tend to have elevated levels of motivation and aspirations when we are planning for a ‘new start’ or considering our future self. However, we tend to minimize the obstacles that will get in our way.

In this episode, we discuss why ignoring these obstacles is a big factor to our “dropping the ball,” why we tend to do it, and how our brain “chunks” patterns of behavior into well-worn habits that require very minimal thinking and decision-making along the way. Our brains are highly trained to focus first on survival…not on our higher aspirational selves. Developing strategies to tune into your higher, value-driven self may be just what we need to help move out of automation and accomplish goals that are so important to ourselves.

Learn about our neuro-chemical reward system, habituation and satiation systems so that you can hack your biology.

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Additional resources for this episode:

  • Jefferey M. Schwartz, M.D. & Rebecca Gladding, M.D. – You are Not Your Brain – The 4-Step Solution for Changing Bad Habits, Ending Unhealthy Thinking and Taking Control of Your Life.
  • Ann M. Graybiel & Kyle S. Smith (2014). – How the Brain Makes and Breaks Habits
  • Judith Wright – The Soft Addiction Solution: Break Free of the Seemingly Harmless Habits That Keep You From The Life You Want.
  • Charles Duhigg (2012) -The Neuroscience of Habits: How They From and How to Change Them
  • These and other resources have been collected for you on our Resources page!



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