Would you be more successful if you were paid to lose weight?

June 3, 2010

What if you were paid to do what you want to do anyway?

Companies are starting to pay their employees to successfully lose weight, exercise & do other healthy behaviors. This article says that the money involved is between $100-500 a year – which isn’t enough to pay for a family vacation, but it could easily offset some of the cost of a gym membership, diet coach or more fresh organic produce.

Wouldn’t it be great if you paid by the calorie?

I don’t have such a thing on offer – no one is offering to pay me to lose weight – and I’m not somebody who is very motivated by money – but the idea of being paid to do what I SHOULD DO (and want to do anyway) is quite appealing.

I’ve always thought that life would be so much easier if you paid for food by the calorie. Twinkies would cost a fortune, apples would be almost free. Bucket of fried chicken? Set you back $50, but a salad with grilled chicken breast only $3. Wouldn’t that be nice?

It would also be great if every time you lost weight you gained money. Get on the scale, -1 pound, +$10. Or even better as a motivator might be the reverse too – if you gain, you pay – that might keep me from going crazy on the weekend!

Alignment of purpose & weight loss synergies

Aligning various factors to make choices easier is one of the key steps to changing behavior

Aligning various factors to make choices easier is one of the key steps to changing behavior (any behavior). So if you want to lose weight, putting a lot of behaviors that will help you do that together helps. It also helps if you can think of those weight-loss behaviors as doing something MORE than helping you successfully lose weight.

That’s why adding a financial incentive to get you walking more or stepping away from the frosting could be a good motivator for a lot of people. Adding things together in the same direction creates Synergy.

I’ve worked on creating synergies for myself

For myself, one of the Alignments of Purpose I’ve created for myself is how I think about my weight loss journey. I now see taking care of how I eat & move as part of general self-care & self-respect. That means I’m doing it for more than vanity. I see it as integrally linked to my health. I see exercise as a big part of how I relieve stress. All of these help to align similar drivers to the same behaviors – which in turn helps me to actually do those things.

I’ve also reverse-engineered a few things too. Last year I started linking things I enjoyed – the small pleasures in life – to reducing stress. And then to my weight as well (since I’m all about Low Stress weight loss). Some of this is mentioned in my 100+ Things That Make Me Happy series, but it’s really related to aligning the purposes – enjoying my life fully helps me be more content in my life while losing weight, and that aligns the purposes I have.

What about you? What kind of synergistic goals do you have that help you align your life towards weight loss?

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