What helps to defeat laziness and procrastination? How can I help you get back on track with your goals for the year? Could a commitment contract work? Do others need to be involved, or does a contract with yourself work just as well? Apparently for a commitment contract to work, the penalty for breaking it and not meeting your goal needs to be so high that it isn’t an option.
There are 3 basic parts to a commitment contract: the goal, the stakes, and the referee
SMART goals: the commitment contract should be for small steps that are easy to measure … the incentive for the small steps will get the big goal accomplished
The Stakes: set the penalty high enough that makes failure painful and decide what would effectively motivate you
Money: How much?
Shame: Humiliation by admitting to others you failed in a public forum?
The Referee: it needs to be someone impartial who won’t give in to your excuses … someone you trust but you don’t have a personal relationship with. Another option is to use www.stickk.com which is a commitment contract website. The Stickk contract is a legally binding commitment — you’ll have the choice between charity, an anti-charity <a cause you’re against>, or an individual. With each option, Stickk takes a cut if you fail.
Personally, that last option scares me. I would hope that I could find the internal motivation to succeed without resorting to harsh penalties. How badly do I really want what I say I want? It all boils down to positive vs. negative motivation: is my enthusiasm for what I want enough or do I need something in place to bolster my intention in times of weakness and laziness?
Would a formal contract motivate you?