People perk up at the idea of starting something new or the prospect of making a positive change.
That’s because change is engaging. It promises something better. It’s novel and arrests attention.
But after we get used to something, that novelty fades and it once again becomes boring. This is the defining moment.
Do we really want the desired outcome or the dopamine hit that comes with the pursuit of something new and exciting?
For most of us, it should be a combination of both. We want change because there is something we desire. At the same time, we also enjoy the instant gratification of thinking that we’re doing something important and exciting.
To sustain the change effort when the novelty effect wears off, we need to do 2 things: (1) Exceed homeostasis, and (2) keep questioning ourselves to stay loyal to the mission.
(1) Exceeding homeostasis
What is homeostasis? It’s the tendency of a system to act in a way that maintains its own stability.
For example, it’s challenging when you start exercising. But after several days, your body adapts to it and the physical strain becomes normal. You get used to it. You’ll find that you can now do more than what you used to be able to do.
If you continue to do the same things, you’ll get bored and quit.