This week we talk to Michelle Segar about making lasting change
Michelle Segar, PhD, is a motivation scientist and author of critically acclaimed “No Sweat! How the Simple Science of Motivation Can Bring You a Lifetime of Fitness” . She is also the Director of the Sport, Health, and Activity Research and Policy Center (SHARP) at the University of Michigan, and Chair of the U.S. National Physical Activity Plan’s Communications Committee.
Her evidence-based ideas about what motivates people to choose and maintain healthy behaviors is changing the conversation across fields. She consults with global organizations on these issues and delivers keynotes and sustainable behavior change trainings. She ran with the Olympic Torch at the 1992 Olympic Games in Barcelona.
In This Interview, Michelle Segar and I Discuss…
- The One You Feed parable
- Her book, No Sweat: How the Simple Science of Motivation Can Bring You a Lifetime of Fitness
- How considering a different “why” for starting to be more physically active can be helpful
- That why we engage in physical activity and what it is that we do are critical when it comes to us sticking with it
- How too many “whys” dilute their positive effect on us
- Intrinsic vs Extrinsic goals
- How answering the question, “What kind of physical activity did you enjoy doing as a kid?” can be important
- That we should start doing what makes us feel good and stop doing what makes us feel bad when it comes to physical activity
- That any physical movement is better than none at all – Everything counts!
- That flexibility is a strategy for success when it comes to sustained physical activity in your life
- The vicious cycle of failure
- The sustainable cycle of self-care
- That it’s important to focus one complicated behavior change at a time
- The self-care hierarchy
Michelle Segar Links
A grandfather is talking with his grandson and he says there are two wolves inside of us which are always at war with each other.
One of them is a good wolf which represents things like kindness, bravery and love. The other is a bad wolf, which represents things like greed, hatred and fear.
The grandson stops and thinks about it for a second then he looks up at his grandfather and says, “Grandfather, which one wins?”
The grandfather quietly replies, the one you feed
The Tale of Two Wolves is often attributed to the Cherokee indians but there seems to be no real proof of this. It has also been attributed to evangelical preacher Billy Graham and Irish Playwright George Bernard Shaw. It appears no one knows for sure but this does not diminish the power of the parable.
This parable goes by many names including:
The Tale of Two Wolves
The Parable of the Two Wolves
Which Wolf Do You Feed
Which Wolf are You Feeding
Which Wolf Will You Feed
It also often features different animals, mainly two dogs.