ISSN 1671-3710
CN 11-4766/R

Advances in Psychological Science ›› 2019, Vol. 27 ›› Issue (7): 1275-1293.doi: 10.3724/SP.J.1042.2019.01275

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Nudging goal attainment: The motivating effects of temporal landmarks

ZHAO Xiaoying, LI Aimei(), WANG Haixia()   

  1. Management School, Jinan University, Guangzhou 510632, China
  • Received:2018-10-24 Online:2019-07-15 Published:2019-05-22
  • Contact: LI Aimei,WANG Haixia;


Temporal landmarks defined as any distinct event that stands out in the everyday humdrum of life, may be beneficial to goal-pursuit motivation. Specifically, when individual experience a current temporal landmark or expects a future temporal landmark, their levels of goal-pursuit motivation would be enhanced, and at the same time, their goal-related behaviors would be more likely to occur. In addition, temporal landmarks may increase individuals’ senses of psychological separation of temporal selves and then enhance goal-pursuit motivation through a series of mental processes such as increased self-efficacy, cognitive consistency, loss aversion and discrepancy-reduction. Future research should focus on examining the motivating effects and duration of temporal landmarks and its generalizability. Moreover, it is worth for future studies to investigate the potential mechanisms of temporal landmarks and to conduct a considerable amount of empirical studies to nudge decision making by manipulating temporal landmarks.

Key words: temporal landmarks, goal attainment, the motivating effects, self-appraisal across time, nudge

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