Subtle Shifts in Perception May Increase Your Exercise Ability

A new study from an NYU social psychologist links perception with exercise ability.

Have you ever wondered why some people seem eternally motivated to work out? Do you ever feel like they’re somehow born this way—and that you’ll just never be that naturally energized? Don’t worry, this isn’t the beginning of a paid informercial for a weight-loss drug (or is it?). It’s a lesson in how your mind works.

In her thought-provoking TED Talk, social psychologist Emily Balcetis explores the relationship between the way in which we see the world and our goal-setting and exercise capabilities. Through a series of studies, Balcetis and her team found that the way we see the world through “our mind’s eye” vastly affects how we will perform when it comes to physical challenges.

Take a look:

Realizing that, for most of us, the majority of the world that we experience enters our consciousness through our vision, how can we shift our perception so that the world becomes nicer and, perhaps, easier? Short of a Zoloft prescription, the best solution would be to keep your eyes on the prize.