Priming can be used when setting goals to help you achieve them.

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Priming when setting goals

The smell of coffee can prime you to want a cup

What is priming?

Priming is a psychological phenomenon.

The Nobel Prize winning Professor Daniel Kahneman describes smiling as a form of priming, because it changes how you feel, as described in one of my previous blogs.

It is so much more powerful than simply about making you feel better by smiling.

Priming is a cornerstone technique to help you get more from life, especially when setting goals.

It is an opportunity to make little changes that can have a big impact on your life.

Priming is when a stimulus from one thing influences how you perceive something else.

Kahneman believes that actions can be primed, sometimes even by something that the person is unaware of.

Have you ever smelt the aroma of coffee when you’re about to order another drink… then found yourself changing to a cup of coffee?

This because you’ve been primed by the smell.

Priming is all around us, both intentionally (for example in advertising) and unintentionally.

If you’re aware that you’ve been primed, you can make a conscious decision about whether you act on it or not.

Priming can help you achieve your goals

In his book, Thinking Fast and Slow, Kahneman found that if he included a number when asking people questions, he primed people towards that number.

For example, asking “Do you think that Gandhi lived to 150 years old, if not, to how old did he live to?” is likely to get a higher answer than “How old do you think Gandhi was when he died?”

You might not realise it, but if you are given a number, it affects a number that you think of shortly afterwards, because you’ve been primed by the first number.

Any target is a prime because you look towards it.

As such, priming yourself with higher targets can lead to greater achievement.

This is an important concept, because it means setting yourself higher goals, primes you to achieve more.

Come along to the next IMPACT Goal workshop to explore how priming can help you set better goals:

Join the next workshop

PS Did you feel like a cup of coffee after reading this blog???

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