psst….if you are just here for the biscuits please scroll down to the end of this post…

…otherwise – a bit of behaviourism for you! as you will recall πŸ˜‰ behaviourists concern themselves with observable behaviours of people and animals, not with unobservable events that take place in their minds.

I started pondering this in particular having run a 5k race last night and come away all fired up to improve my future 5k times, full of enthusiasm and fizzing with new energy. whereas if I had run my usual 5k route at the same pace I would not have felt such motivation towards that goal.

and the difference being having been in the company of others, all of whom were determinedly pursuing a common goal, which could be described as ‘running 3.1 miles as fast as they possibly can.’

and I’ve discovered a new phrase describing this effect – goal contagion.

a (short, readable!) article here about what underlies this principle:

‘A remarkable facet of human beings relative to all other animals is that we tend to look at other people’s behaviour and see not only what they are doing but what they are trying to accomplish. That is, we automatically interpret the goals that people have from their behaviours. It has been argued that this ability to reason about other people’s goals has been crucial for the development of complex culture.Β In addition, because we reason about other people’s goals, we are often driven to adopt those goals ourselves.

I can see that there is a great evolutionary advantage to having the ability to assess what other people are trying to accomplish, and to take on those goals ourselves. In terms of the sober community, I can certainly attest to the fact that having been immersed in the company of other sober warriors for over ten months, the goal of becoming a life-long sober person has moved from seeming an impossible, unlikely dream to an eminently achievable and desirable reality.

but the best bit is that we are able to internalise other people’s motivation, to increase our own exponentially. which is such a great multiplier of those scarce resources of inspiration and determination. love that!

so as a little thank you to all of you out there for all the boosting you have given me, having given flowers the other day, would like to send you all the ability to create what is possibly the best biscuit in the world – the Anzac biscuit. recipe follows. I defiantly make mine in ounces. enjoy πŸ™‚

thank you too, Mary Berry!

54 days to one year…

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