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BBC: How ‘Emergency Reserves’ Can Help you Stick to your Goals

“It’s been a few weeks since I touched language-learning app Duolingo. At one point I was pretty on top of it. But one day I was too busy and it slipped my mind, and then the next day I did it again. “What the hell,” I thought, “I lost my streak yesterday so I may as well give myself another day off today.” Does this sound familiar? This phenomenon is called the “What the hell” effect. “You feel like you have failed,” says Marissa Sharif, an assistant professor at the Wharton School, University of Pennsylvania, US. “It’s the reason why you might choose to eat a high-calorie dessert when you’re trying to be careful with your weight. If you go slightly over your limit, say you’re eating out with friends, then you’re likely to give up and go really far over; ‘What the hell, I may as well get that dessert’. After a small failure people often give up completely.” Read more at BBC