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What really motivates us and where does motivation come from?  Motivation can wear many faces.  Sometimes we are motivated by external factors – a race result, a promotion, a leaderboard, money, or a number on a scale.  Other times, we are motivated because we simply love doing something.  Going deep into why we choose to do certain things and how to stick with our habits is a fascinating topic.  I personally think it’s important to have awareness around our self-talk and understanding how to motivate others in a positive, proactive way.  I was really excited to have the chance to speak with Dr. Heather Patrick.   She earned her Ph.D. in Social Psychology.  She has contributed to health psychology in many ways including her role as the health scientist and program director at the National Cancer Institute for 5 years and the associate director of the Initiative.  Currently, she works at Carrot to help create programs and technology around stopping smoking.  She is passionate about health coaching and is a runner herself.

Dr. Patrick has more than 50 peer-reviewed publications and nearly 15 years of experience using scientific theories of human motivation to develop, implement, and evaluate behavioral interventions in tobacco cessation, nutrition, weight management, physical activity, and stress management.

Topics Discussed in the Podcast 

  • What is Self Determination Theory (SDT)
  • 3 building blocks of SDT
  • The one thing to focus on when it comes to goal setting
  • How to harness intrinsic motivation over extrinsic motivation
  • Motivating others as a parent and in the work place to do their best
  • Why using external rewards isn’t most effective
  • The best way to pull yourself out of a self-destructive spiral
  • How SDT is used to help people quit smoking (or change habits)
  • Relationship between SDT and willpower, laziness, procrastination

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