Here’s an interesting new study which suggests that self-efficacy – belief in yourself – has a lot to do with what you eat and whether you stick to an exercise program.
Researcher Rhonda Anderson at Queensland University of Technology surveyed over 560 women between the ages of 51 and 66 on their exercise and dietary habits. She found that two thirds of these women were overweight or obese. And, that they were interested in making diet and exercise changes, but lacked effective strategies for change.
Anderson also discovered that being overweight or obese influenced their self-efficacy. Anderson explains that “Women who carried a lot of excess weight were more likely to have low self-efficacy and to not believe they could stick to an effective healthy exercise or diet program.”
According to Anderson…
“Self efficacy is our belief that we can produce the result we want to produce, so a person with high dietary self-efficacy believes they can eat healthily no matter what – even when bored, upset, tired, on holiday or at a party.”
“A person’s level of self-efficacy determines how hard they try and how long they stick at things in the face of difficulties. People with high self-efficacy are motivated and optimistic – when the going gets tough, they keep going.”
“People with low self-efficacy avoid difficult tasks and when things get tough they are more likely to give up. We can improve our self-efficacy by developing skills, having role models and getting encouragement from others.”
One more strategy for improving self-efficacy is goal setting. In order to develop self-efficacy you have to succeed at things. And you can’t succeed at things unless you have goals. For more on goal setting, click here….