Gretchen Rubin-There is No Finish Line to your Goals: You Deserve More

Haven’t we all, at one time or another, struggled with getting new activities to become more permanent?

Gretchen Rubin, author of The Happiness Project and fellow Podcaster, shares her research with us on how to create lasting habits.

And because no single strategy works for everyone, she dove deeper into different personality types and how they can use their inherent predispositions to their advantage.

She also discussed the challenges different personalities traits have so we can be aware of avoiding potential roadblocks.

In her studies, she identified 4 general personality types: Upholders, Questioners, Obligers and Rebels.

A link to her quiz is included below so you can learn how you may be able to make long-term positive changes in your own life.

She also touches on simple strategies we can all add into our daily routines to be happier people, how to avoid getting off track once the rush of completing a major goal wears off, and shares examples she has come across with other runners that are extremely helpful.

Many of us are still in a New Year, New You mindset and this episode provides powerful ideas to make sure that we stay on track with the goals we have set for ourselves, not just in the near-term, but for as long as we really want.

Gretchen Rubin-There is No Finish Line to your Goals: You Deserve More

Here are some of the topics we’ll discuss today:

  • How our different personality traits determine how they form habits.
  • Why we should use ‘milestones’ vs. ‘finish lines’ to maintain habits indefinitely.
  • Why it’s important to protect key activities in our schedules and how to do it.
  • Why and how we should use self-reflection of our prior experiences to realize what worked well, or didn’t, in our past.
  • How we can proactively stave off ‘Runner’s Blues’ after accomplishing a big goal or avoid Seasonal Affective Disorder.

Questions Gretchen is asked:

4:19 Why should people focus on personal improvement?

5:36 What are some examples of easy, significant changes someone can make?

8:34 What are the 4 Tendencies you refer to in your books?

11:33 Besides Upholders, how can runners who fall into the other Tendencies work with their strengths to achieve their running goals?

18:08 Are there any dangers with being an Upholder that they should look out for?

20:30 How does social media play into these different Tendencies?

24:31 What is the Danger Of A Finish Line?

27:25 What would you suggest to help people avoid Finish Line Dangers?

30:00 Could you swap related activities for specific activities during a recovery period?

31:26 How do you stay mentally engaged when your fastest running days are behind you?

33:47 Do people need to take a temporary clean break without a goal or does it vary by Tendency?

36:24 What if people still feel something is missing after achieving a goal, even if they have replaced the key activities related to that goal?

37:55 What advice do you have to help people avoid Seasonal Affective Disorder?

41:38 The Final Kick Round

Quotes by Gretchen:

If there’s something that you could do pretty easily that’s going to give you a big happiness boost, wouldn’t you want to do that?

(Regarding Questioners): They tend to love data and reporting, so things like monitoring how far they’re going or what their time is, keeping records. Really figure it out, whatever it would take to make that decision because while you’re  not sure it’s going to block your way because you’re going to be sort of stuck… but once you decide then you can do it.

(Regarding Obligers): If you’re an obliger you need ‘Outer Accountability’, you could work out with a trainer, you could join a running group where people are going to be annoyed if you don’t show up.

(Regarding Rebels): They can do anything the WANT to do. The idea of a structured schedule, something that is very appealing to an Upholder, it’s a big turn-off for a Rebel.

(Regarding Upholders): Upholders sometimes suffer from ‘tightening’ and this is when the ‘rules’ get tighter and tighter… Sometimes it can feel choking. If you feel like it’s sort of over-mastering you, you want to be aware that this is a phenomenon that Upholders can experience and you want to stay in control of it.

Hitting a goal is a great way to hit a goal; it’s not a great way to keep a habit, because habits are usually things that we want to do indefinitely. It’s more helpful to think of a milestone. It’s a 30-day Yoga Challenge, but what are you doing on Day 34?

To be happy you have to think about feeling good, feeling bad, feeling right in an atmosphere of growth.

Take a Listen on Your Next Run

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Mentioned in this podcast:

Four Tendencies Quiz – Which one are you?

Podcast Interview with Rob Wilby

RunnersConnect Coaching

Bonnie Kelly’s book: True to Your Core (Tina mentioned this book was helpful)

ASICS Running Shoes for Women

Happier with Gretchen Rubin Podcasts

Gretchen’s website with daily updates on adventures in happiness

Book: Better Than Before, 21 strategies people can use to make or break habits

Book: The Happiness Project, field tests in how to actually be happy.

Follow Gretchen on Twitter

Follow Gretchen on Facebook

Follow Gretchen on Instagram

Follow Gretchen on Pinterest

Tina’s Athlete Page on Facebook

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2 Responses on “Gretchen Rubin-There is No Finish Line to your Goals: You Deserve More

  1. Hi Tina! Great episode once again! I love Gretchen Rubin! I’ve been listening to her podcast for about a year and a half. I took the quiz over a year ago, and just took it again, with the same result – I am a Rebel. Being a huge Star Wars fan, I am good with that. 😛

  2. Great episode! For your unofficial “Which tendency is most popular among runners” poll… I’m a Questioner.

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