We all have goals that are important to us but hard to reach. This exhibit asks you to reflect on the goals in your life, as well as some of the barriers that stand in your way. Using insights from choice architecture and the psychology of motivation and goal setting, you can choose a strategy to help you remove the barrier between you and a specific goal, and get started on designing your best life.

By choosing a colorful shape to answer each question in the exhibit, you’ll create a layered data portrait that represents your goal, the perceived barrier, and a technique to remove the barrier and reach your goal. And then you’ll display your portrait on our wall alongside hundreds of portraits of others who are also pledging to design their best lives.

See what others are pledging and share your portrait by searching and posting on social media with the hashtag #choicearchitect.

Images from the Exhibit

People putting shapes on the Design Your Best Life wall while someone reads the directions
Close up of a hand putting the shapes on the Design Your Best Life wall
A man taking a picture of a woman posing with her work

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Further Readings: The Science behind the Exhibit

Choice architecture leverages insights from across the discipline of social psychology and offers especially powerful interventions for applications in the area of motivation and goal setting.

  • Woolley, K., & Fishbach, A. (2016). For the fun of it: Harnessing immediate rewards to increase persistence in long-term goals. Journal of Consumer Research, 42(6), 952-966.
  • Imas, A., Kuhn, M., & Mironova, V. (2021). Waiting to choose: the role of deliberation in intertemporal choice. American Economic Journal: Microeconomics.
  • Dean, J. T., & Jayachandran, S. (2019). Changing family attitudes to promote female employment. In AEA Papers and Proceedings, 109, 138–42.
  • Alice G. Walton, "Want to motivate people? Stress goals, not means," Chicago Booth Review, June 22, 2018.

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