Commit #1: An irresistible incentive

Whether you’re beating a habit or blitzing creativity, you need rewards. Why can’t we imagine pleasure? 


Boots. A hazy image. Why is it so hard to vividly imagine incentives (but so easily to conjure fear of punishment?) © Laura Eades 2014 all rights reserved

What’s the trophy?

My friend and I set ourselves a challenge. Mine is to finish editing my novel by my birthday – 7th April 2014. It’s already begun.

We set ourselves some stomach-churning penalties (more about those soon – hers involve flinging her beloved boots into the Thames! Ha! Ironically, boots is on my list of rewards too – but I’m not that excited about having new ones cos I need some anyway).

I want to pepper my work schedule with rewards. ps. I don’t have much money. But what I’m really lacking is a pleasureful imagination.

Pain is more familiar

Pleasure. Hard to imagine it in abundance? It’s much, much easier to think up a penalty that makes you sick to think of it than a reward that makes you jump for it.

Here are some of my minor rewards

  • A box set (friend gonna send me Scandinavian murder series)
  • A pregnancy massage (my friend gave me one, I’ve yet to book it)
  • Some new boots/kickers – that’s lame cos I really need them anyway
  • Hair clips
  • Starting the day with a smoothie in a cafe
  • A bunch of flowers for my desk
  • A day with my friend (birthday day?)
  • A grey sweatshirt I’ve seen and like from H&M costing a tenner

But I want a really big incentive, for the end date.

I’m going to invite people to a party, I think, but I want a real thing too. I made £200 on a little job, what could I spend it on that would totally motivate me? Can you think up a really great pleasure for me?

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Ideas in the comment thread please. Click on the pale grey dot with a plus sign to open it up.

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