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Posted 09/15/2023 by DAVID CHARLTON

EP 187: Task vs Ego Involvement: Do You Set Goals That Harm Your Performances?

David is a Mental Toughness Practitioner, as well as a Health Care and Professions Council (HCPC) Registered Sport and Exercise Psychologist.  He has successfully supported athletes, teams and organisations for over 10 years in order to ensure that they perform at their maximum more often.

He has a comprehensive knowledge around the development of Mental Toughness, a plastic personality trait, which determines or limits people to deal effectively with change, challenges and stressors.  In today’s climate, during the Coronavirus pandemic this quality is becoming more and more valuable to individuals, teams and organisations. 

Are you one of those people who sets goals for yourself, but you get frustrated at not achieving them?  Or perhaps you’re a coach or teacher who notices some of your athletes often display a negative, “can’t do” attitude towards things that you ask them to do.

In this short solo episode, I discuss the way that we view our ability goes on to underpin two different achievement goal states; task and ego involvement.  Task and ego involvement, play a large part in how we view success and whether we get caught in the trap of comparing ourselves to others as I discuss.  This episode I’m hoping will shed some light on answering the questions above so that you can set better goals for yourself.    As well as helping coaches, teachers and parents create more of a task/mastery involved climate.

Key Learning Points

  • Our perceptions of competence can define how we view success.
  • Many strikers in football judge past performances and their capacity to score or perform relative to others.
  • Subconscious habits in relation to our goal orientations as well as the wider motivational climate play a big part in how we set goals. 
  • Task orientation is associated with a wide range of benefits; including positive thoughts, moods and emotions as well as “can do” behaviours. 
  • Ego orientation is associated with neutral or negative thinking and emotions and lower mood especially when task goals are overlooked.

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Relevant Podcast Episodes to Help Your Commitment Levels

Ep015: Nick Grantham – Essential Elements of Rest and Recovery

Ep042: Mark Bennett MBE – Characteristics of High Performance Athletes 

Ep138: Nick Littlehales – Why do the Mentally Tough see Sleep and Recovery as Important

Ep 154: David Charlton – How Do I Go About Controlling The Controllables To Help My Sport Performance?

Ep186: David Charlton – Intrinsic or Extrinsic Goals: Do You Set Goals That Harm Your Performances?

Other Relevant Blogs and Resources to Boost Your Commitment

Blog: Focusing on the Process as a Team

Blog: Why You Should Stop Setting SMART Goals

Blog: Steps To Form A Habit That Actually Sticks

Blog: How to Set Goals for Netball Success?

Blog: 6 Reasons Why Goal Setting Doesn’t Work

Click the button below to join The Sports Psychology Hub a Facebook group that David hosts to help ambitious athletes, serious sport coaches, sporting parents, sports psychologists and mental game coaches to support each other.


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