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Eyes on the Prize

Title: Eyes on the Prize: The Longitudinal Benefits of Goal Focus on Progress Toward a Weight Loss Goal.
Name(s): Conlon, Kyle, author
Ehrlinger, Joyce, author
Eibach, Richard, author
Crescioni, A. Will (Albert William), author
Alquist, Jessica, author
Gerend, Mary, author
Dutton, Gareth, author
Type of Resource: text
Genre: Text
Issuance: serial
Date Issued: 2011
Physical Form: computer
online resource
Extent: 1 online resource
Language(s): English
Abstract/Description: Past research suggests that focusing on what has not yet been accomplished (goal focus) signals a lack of progress towards one's high commitment goals and inspires greater motivation than does focusing on what has already been accomplished (accomplishment focus). The present investigation extends this research to a longitudinal, important domain by exploring the consequences of focusing on one's goals versus accomplishments when pursuing a weight loss goal. Participants were tracked over the course of a 12-week weight loss program that utilized weekly group discussions and a companion website to direct participants' focus toward their end weight loss goal or toward what they had already achieved. Goal-focused participants reported higher levels of commitment to their goal and, ultimately, lost more weight than did accomplishment-focused and no focus control participants. Accomplishment-focused participants did not differ from controls on any measure.
Identifier: FSU_migr_mhs-0007 (IID), 10.1016/j.jesp.2011.02.005 (DOI)
Keywords: goals, self-regulation, weight loss, motivation, comparison standards
Note: Originally published in Journal of Experimental Social Psychology:
Citation: Conlon KE, Ehrlinger J, Eibach RP, Crescioni AW, Alquist JL, Gerend MA, & Dutton GR. (2011). Eyes on the prize: The longitudinal benefits of goal focus on progress toward a weight loss goal. Journal of Experimental Social Psychology, 47(4): 853-855.
Subject(s): Human behavior
Medical sciences
Social psychology
Persistent Link to This Record:
Host Institution: FSU
Is Part of Series: Behavioral Sciences and Social Medicine Faculty Publications.
Is Part Of: Journal of Experimental Social Psychology.
Issue: 4, 47

Choose the citation style.
Conlon, K., Ehrlinger, J., Eibach, R., Crescioni, A. W. (A. W. ), Alquist, J., Gerend, M., & Dutton, G. (2011). Eyes on the Prize: The Longitudinal Benefits of Goal Focus on Progress Toward a Weight Loss Goal. Journal Of Experimental Social Psychology. Retrieved from