Make Your Life Better!

Why do some people struggle more than others to keep off the pounds? Social psychologist Emily Balcetis shows research that addresses one of the many factors…

Comments (25)

  1. Juan Torres said on 01-03-2015

    So, people who voted for Obama literally saw him white and people who voted
    against – saw him black. Basically, racism lives even when you don’t think
    you’re racist. I love this.

  2. beatonm198 said on 01-03-2015

    Because some people are lazy and worthless, and would’ve been bred out back
    in the times when living was hard. 

  3. Guillaume Bourgault said on 01-03-2015

    WTF! The graph at 6:06 is a big patatoid. I agree with the general idea,
    but the correlation is kind of weak. I think this researcher let her own
    mind alter the way she saw the graph. 

  4. alwaysuseless said on 02-03-2015

    I love running because I enjoy being outdoors. I enjoy the sunshine, fresh
    air & scenery. Maybe I’ll see a Great Blue Heron or an Osprey. And aerobic
    exercise elevates my mood. If I had to focus on a finish line, that would
    be boring & disheartening. Nothing could be more enervating or contrary to
    the spirit of running than thinking of it as just something to complete. Of
    course, some days are easier than others. That’s not discouraging or
    encouraging; it’s just interesting. I’ve learned that when I feel like
    taking a nap instead, I can have a great run (easily run faster) by first
    taking a short nap. Also, carry enough water (with some electrolyte, if
    it’s warm). The findings presented here apply to out-of-shape, infrequent
    runners.

  5. ehcmier said on 02-03-2015

    Back in the late 80s, I discovered I could jog longer if I was merely
    distracted from the act of exercising, which is what putting effort into
    visually locking onto a literal finish line, and blurring out the
    surroundings would do. I wasn’t using any visualization tricks, but had an
    enjoyable conversation with a friend. Normally, for me, breathing harder
    from exertion is uncomfortable and can really impact me second by second to
    want to stop, but surprisingly, chatting while jogging had no negative
    impact on oxygen intake or discomfort, and I felt better overall. Also,
    jogging in the daytime, under the sun, is brutal, overwhelmingly
    uncomfortable, with problems lasting hours afterward, while jogging in cool
    night air feels great. Reducing awareness of exertion and stress is the
    trick for me, and the only visual connection to my experience is that, when
    talking, I unconsciously visualize what I’m talking about, when referring
    to persons, places, things, recalling events, imagining any of that in a
    fictional sense, but I’m not exerting visualization. Also, whatever’s
    distracting me cannot be boring or another set of problems related to the
    exercise. It doesn’t work for me.

  6. Kröte nschemel said on 02-03-2015

    Uhhuh… a lot of unscientific methods, conclusion jumped to, mix up
    between correlation and causation, expressions like “it feels 17% easier”
    which can only come from someone who doesn’t expect her audience to
    understand math and a lot of unrelated stuff mixed up into one story, to
    get one message out: “Look at the price/prize and this product placement
    and this productplacement and this productplacement. And let me finish by
    suggesting you should compare the products we just showed you and look at
    the price. That’s some serious tricks they pulled there to get a car ad on
    ted.

  7. Graeme Ab said on 02-03-2015

    There may be a correlation between bodyweight/fitness levels and perception
    of distance, but that does not mean the former causes the latter.

    Their perception of “difficulty” as well as bodyweight/fitness levels may
    just be a symptom of a particular mindset. Could this phenomena be similar
    to denial in that it is a defence mechanism insofar as the ego needs
    protecting from the “threat” of self deprecating thoughts when failing to
    exercise? By which I mean exaggerating the difficulty so they therefore
    feel more comfortable mentally with not exercising?

  8. Batoul K. said on 02-03-2015

    There’s merit to this talk but her ‘clinical trials’ were very
    unscientific. OF COURSE people who are overweight would feel a distance
    longer than fit people.

    And the one with the weights attached to ankles? 15% of the person’s body
    weight is A LOT if you’re overweight compared to the ones for a fit person.

    So, I’m not convinced. 

  9. Adrien Perié said on 02-03-2015

    *Oh my god*. This has to be the
    *DUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHiest* of all TED
    conferences. Focusing on the finish line made them feel like it was easier
    to reach than focusing on the garbage can next to it, it made them better
    at reaching it ? Really ? Video or it didn’t happen…………
    Also, most of the “experiences” are unscientific in nature (aka: the
    results aren’t even reliable), the scientists are given large opportunities
    to influence the subjects, the subjects and their performance are being
    influenced by their belief in whether or not the strategy they are being
    given is good or not and the “results” are totally unclear and unscientific
    themselves.
    Basically she is demonstrating what every single person who’s ever done any
    kind of physical efforts already knows, poorly.
    Also who finances this research ? I want in on that, I have a big theory
    that might change the world as we know it: Will being strung out on heroin
    have a bad influence on my ability to solve Einstein’s field equations ?
    NOW GIMMEH MONEY.

  10. Sonny Darvishzadeh said on 02-03-2015

    i’m actually interested in social science, but why people are focusing on
    wrong things, haven’t you heard of maintaining the right weight is mostly
    about diet, not exercise? focus on why some people find eating the “right
    foods in right amount in right time” harder than others

    i’ve lost more than 18kg in last few months, all my exercises were failing,
    and every diet i try is working. you can actually gain tons of fat while
    exercising the entire day.

  11. Brenda B said on 02-03-2015

    Keeping weight at a healthy level, living healthy is a way of life. it’s
    all about choices. I am the only one in my extended family who did the
    research to take my extra weight off, then keep it off. I get up in the
    morning, into yoga pants & T-Shirt, go to the gym. My B.M.I was 55 in 2004.
    It’s now 22. I was taught that exercise was not necessary. I have learned
    that it is very necessary. Eat as natural as possible, Drink water, sipping
    throughout the day. Do 1 hour of rigorous exercise every day (HR at 114 and
    up for 1 hour). Stay away from sugar, tobacco, alcohol and negative people.

  12. Leap O Faith said on 02-03-2015

    Please take a closer look at the graph relating estimated distance to
    waist-hip ratio. There seems to be very little to no correlation between
    the two variables. The graph does not label either axis specifically
    rendering all data insignificant. Please upload the scale to which these
    results were measured and the actual distance of the finish line from the
    subject or provide a link to results online. Try to remember that for
    future graphs as it gives meaning to the result you and your coworkers have
    worked so hard to produce.

  13. allyonightmare said on 02-03-2015

    social psychology is for people literally with no talent: studying social
    interactions of humans? are you fucking kidding me?
    go be a doctor or something, stop wasting your life on a fucking useless
    non-existent category of life

  14. dattebenforcer said on 02-03-2015

    Lose some weight fatty!

  15. shiftyjake said on 02-03-2015

    I’ve found remarkable differences in my motivation to exercise based on my
    living arrangement, job, stress level, etc, but none of these factors were
    discussed. What I’d really like to know is to what degree different people
    are prone or even able to “keep their eye on the prize” when it comes to
    exercise. We evolved in a world where exercise was nearly constant, and
    rest was valuable. To what degree do our caveman brains actually devalue or
    demotivate us to exercise when rest is a possibility? We know our brains
    have methods of motivating us to do all sorts of things, biochemically
    speaking. Why does that motivation turn on for so few people when faced
    with the prospect of jogging?

  16. Dan Phillips said on 02-03-2015

    In her tests, the finish line was in sight. In general, that won’t be the
    case. What does “eye on the prize” mean in that case? In my experience, the
    goal can be too daunting if it is a long way away, and it’s better to focus
    on what you are doing in the moment.

  17. SirxCFJERKx said on 02-03-2015

    She does make quite a few points to which i agree with, but there was only
    one issue i had throughout her presentation: the control. There was lack of
    a control group for each experiment her team tested, which from a
    scientific perspective, means it can be invalid. If she had a third group
    that was told nothing, maybe the results could’ve been more satisfying.
    Other than that, i completely agree with how much power our minds can have
    on achieving goals.

  18. Nikolina Cumbo said on 02-03-2015

    ” Keeping your eyes on the prize made the exercise look and feel easier
    even when people were working harder because they were moving faster. Now,
    I know there’s more to good health than walking a little bit faster, but
    keeping your eyes on the prize might be one additional strategy that you
    can use to help promote a healthy lifestyle. “

  19. Dan Gager said on 02-03-2015

    While I agree completely with the premise presented here and find the
    information helpful, this study is terribly flawed. One cannot assume that
    the talent of measuring distance has any direct relation to a person’s
    fitness. Rather it is the product of prior experience or as I stated, a
    talent. For example, many fit people know the exact distance of a run, a
    throw or a target because that has been their goal of practice for extended
    periods of time. Imagine several sports if you will; a football field, a
    swimming pool, basketball court, tennis court, shooting range, track,
    bicycle race etc., all distanced, all measured. A basketball player can
    tell you how far to the hoop, not because he is fit but because of his
    experience. His fitness is the product of such practice. Yet you can also
    find a well trained marksman, 20+ lbs over weight, that can accurately
    tell you most distances not because of his fitness level but rather because
    of his shooting experiences on a distance marked course. Simply, being
    over weight does not mean a person is a poor judge of distance and most fit
    individuals will have had some prior athletic experiences to have helped
    train them on judging distance. Likewise I have met runners that by nature
    are poor judge of distance and after years of running still cannot tell you
    how far something is. Therefore this study needs a different model to prove
    the importance of perception. I personally do not see exercise as a hurdle
    according to distance but something much more emotional. I seriously
    dislike exercising alone yet I am compliant to a fault in exercising with a
    friend, sometimes way over stepping my limits just to have the company. 

  20. Michelle Israel said on 02-03-2015

    Good Points at first But We Need to be realistic lady Not ladeda head in
    the clouds. The fall of man is assuming everything is ok. And the world has
    no goals. Whats the point in getting tunnel vision and ignoring everything
    around us inorder to get what we want or feel what we want. How about we
    deal with things how they are and not be overly positive or negative but
    realistic 

  21. papariga alexia said on 02-03-2015

    fun fact do you know that empathy is a greek word and it means to have hate
    for something (usually for no justifiable reason). that is the way we use
    it. i dont know the reason why, but in english its positive and has a
    different meaning… i am just saying because she used it so many times.

  22. Ras Fiend said on 02-03-2015

    So guess all the liberal tards that were patting themselves for voting for
    the first Black President were actually full of crap…

  23. Saral Thakur said on 02-03-2015

    one word:Lazy.
    They are fucking lazy

  24. choadkin said on 02-03-2015

    I prefer all my leaders and teachers to be in shape and have decent bone
    structure.

  25. Polona Florijancic said on 02-03-2015

    If you don’t look around you may be more ‘in shape’ or more ‘successful’
    but you’ll never be a rich person inside…

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