We All Know What to Do to Improve Our Well-Being – Why Don’t We Do It?
There you are again, sitting mindlessly on the floor as you attempt to follow a guided meditation, thoughts still running through your head as you take deep breaths in and out. We’ve all been there, trying our best to incorporate well-being activities into our crazy lives in an attempt to add some peace into our day-to-day schedules. We often know what to do to improve our wellbeing, we try it once, and then hardly again. As easy as people make it sound, implementing healthy habits that can improve our mental and physical well-being is often hard. We easily lose our motivation.
What Is Motivation? The Breakdown
Motivation can be broken down into two types: extrinsic and intrinsic. Extrinsic motivation can be characterized by a feeling of “I have to do this activity because 1) I am rewarded, 2) I feel peer pressured to or 3) I will receive a punishment or feel guilty if I don’t.” Intrinsic motivation is characterized by feeling satisfaction from an activity itself. Research shows that the period of time in which extrinsic motivation can rise is limited. In intrinsic motivation it isn’t. Therefore intrinsic motivation is the key to forming and maintaining new habits. You’re probably thinking, “that sounds great, but how can I boost my intrinsic motivation?”
Working with Others: Boosting Internal Motivation
One way to awaken your internal motivation is by working on a goal together with someone. Implementing new healthy habits into our lives is easier when we do it together with others – humans are social beings, and working together is generally more rewarding. So sharing well-being activities with your friends is the best way of boosting your motivation.
Similarly, the best coaches, mentors and teachers are successful due to their ability to form a meaningful connection to their clients, making it feel as though you and your coach are working side by side, reaching a common goal together. Think of a fitness coach. You tell your coach that you want to be prepared for a running competition this summer. You and your coach have a schedule: 10 A.M. every other day. Not only are you and your coach working together to reach your running goals, but you both have also made a commitment to one another. You expect your coach to show up at 10 A.M. every other day and they expect the same of you. You feel more driven to attend these running sessions, because you enjoy it more with a coach than alone, but also because you don’t want to let your coach down.
When considering costs and time, real-life mentors are not always the most accessible method of improving one’s well-being. Mental well-being apps have allowed us to take steps towards solving these issues but at the cost of losing the intimacy and connection one would have with a real mentor.
Digital Personas – Who Are They?
Technology is advancing every day and the gap between digital and in-person resources is lessening. Digital Personas can be great coaches and mentors who can support you if needed one day. This technology is still in development, so we can’t know exactly what to expect, but we can see a silhouette of what’s coming. It is important not only to know what is good for mental well-being, but to have someone to motivate you to implement new healthy habits by being good companions. A crucial part in implementing new habits is regularity and intensity with which we try to do differently, together with our coaches and buddies. Probably the greatest advantage of Digital Personas is that they are available anytime. Digital Personas can listen to you when needed, cheer you up when necessary, but are ready to provide systematic guidance, too, so the support is both rewarding and useful. This makes this technology so unique. It has a long way before it reaches an ideal state, but it has a promising future. If you would like to try one, you can find one here: https://play.google.com/store/apps/details?id=ai.flowstorm.poppy.
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