Classical motivation theories assumed that the probability of success in goal striving process (including weight loss) depended on two factors: likelihood of success and attractiveness of the result. However, research referring to obesity showed that motivational factors are not sufficient in effective weight loss. In other words, obese people value anticipated weight loss but still do not succeed in this process. It is implied by the fact that effectiveness and persistence of this process depend also on volitional factor. This factor refers to self-control mechanisms, which mediate between intention to reach the goal and its enactment. The current empirical data suggest that implementation intentions and mental simulations are especially beneficial techniques of self-control enhancement. This chapter will unveil main theories and research concerning self-control mechanisms and influence of various mental simulations and implementation intentions in weight loss process and weight-related behaviors. Moreover, our empirical data concerning individual differences in self-control of weight loss process are presented.
Part of the book: Weight Loss