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The Chocolate Pattern: Creating Motivation

A pattern for getting you to do something you do not like to do, but with more motivation.

A very meaningful application of this pattern is for changing your feelings about tasks that you have congruently decided to perform, but that you currently do not like to do. If you have decided congruently that it is important to do it, you can enjoy it as well! Be very careful with the Ecology of this pattern; you do not want to casually or carelessly install an intense need to do something.


  1. Motivating image::
    Create an associated picture of a thing or activity that you find extremely compelling and appealing (chocolate, for example). Set this aside for a moment.
  2. Image of the task::
    Create a dissociated image of yourself portraying you doing something that you have congruently made the decision to perform and that you must do so that you can enjoy it as well.
  3. Ecology Check::
    Is there any part of you that has an objection to your enjoying doing the job you've chosen to do?
  4. Iris Template:
    a. See the image of the task (# 2) in your mind's eye, with the motivational image (# 1) immediately behind it. Quickly open a small hole in the center of picture # 2 so you can see picture # 1 through this hole. Quickly open the hole as far as you need to achieve a full emotional response to image # 1. b. Now let the hole shrink quickly, but only as fast as you can maintain the emotional response to image # 1. c. Repeat steps 4a and 4b several times as fast as you can. The goal is to combine the feeling of the motivating image with that of the task image.
  5. Test:
    Look at the image of the task (# 2). Do you feel drawn to it? If not, repeat step 4 or go back to the previous steps to make sure you have the right elements.

In addition to the obvious therapeutic applications, this pattern also has many business applications, e.g., for employees who have useful jobs that are not fun on their own. It can also be used by salespeople or agents who are reluctant to make phone calls or make home visits to get them to phone calls and visits they have put off.