MORAL LICENSING – WHY FEELING “GOOD” JUSTIFIES DOING “BAD”

Robert Mayer - BORN 65

How can this be?

The researchers thought. They were testing to see whether people who were half way to completing their overall goal would be more likely to finish it if they were focused on how far they had come, or how far they still had to go.

The researchers believed they had a sure winner in the group that focused on their progress. After all, wouldn’t feeling good about how far you have come make you that much more committed to seeing the goal through to the finish?

Apparently not.

The participants who focused on their progress not only did worse than the participants who focused on how far they still needed to go, they also did worse than the control group who didn’t focus on either! [1]

Why is this? Shouldn’t feeling good about your progress give you the confidence that you need to make it to…

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