The Act as If Principle. Get motivated fast.

Act as if is an easy to use technique to create instant motivation to do something or build motivation when you are having a dip in your motivation. It is one of the simplest forms of positive hypnosis or self hypnosis conducted out of trance.

This technique is the process of acting like you want to do something, even though you may not feel like doing it. To use this motivation building trick, you adopt the posture, tone, physical approach of someone who you imagine would like doing the activity that you are struggling to motivate yourself to do. Then start the activity in that manner and maintain this acting approach. After a short time the positive feelings which you would like from doing that activity if you really were keen and motivated to do it start to emerge naturally. So the act of pretending to enjoy doing something actually creates the positive feelings of doing it. Sounds too good to be true, so Act as if you believe me and try it out.

Instant Motivation

By learning the Act As If Principle, people with little motivation can become motivated and achieve more which in itself will result in raised self esteem. The act as if principle was first written about over 100 years ago by William James who outlined how to create motivation to do things people are reluctant to do. The Act As If principle is still used extensively today within all motivational change work from addictions, weight management, anxiety management and through to undertaking tedious task when experiencing a depression condition.


James suggested that you should adopt the manner, facial expressions, pace, tone, posture, dress whatever is typical of someone who is keen to do the task and set about doing this and in a short time anyone acting as if they wanted to do this would soon get the feelings which would be associated with someone who really wants to do this.

Build confidence and friendships with Act AS IF

This simple form of self suggestion or self hypnosis is key to developing self esteem and confidence as you can pretend to be excited about doing a task instead of anxious or scared. Equally you can use this technique to build peer networks if you are socially isolated. If you are anxious about meeting new people Act as if can give you the confidence and motivation to meet people and build support networks by just Acting like your are confident in new social settings.

Many professionals use the act as if principle when they have to deal with difficult situations or ones which lead them to feeling vulnerable and nervous. For example some professionals like nurses and police officers will appear very calm in dangerous or unpredictable situations despite feeling the opposite but by giving a confidence appearance leads them to feeling confident. Equally when teachers have to deal with a difficult class or a social worker has to deal with new situations they will adopt a calm and confident manner which helps them feel calm and confident.

If it Only Takes a Minute Technique


The only takes a minute technique is a simple tool to help combat motivation issues which also builds self esteem so it is great at treating depression, anxiety and any motivation sapping conditions.

Getting simple tasks completed, which takes a moments have massive health benefits.

Beat anxiety and depression with the only takes a minute technique

When experiencing anxiety and depression or feeling overwhelmed it can be hard to find the energy and drive to motivate yourself to do anything. This lack of drive has serious impacts on the mind and body. Using this technique encourages you to physically accomplish more. The process of being active helps to have a natural endorphin release which will help you to feel happier and better about doing other things and so raise your motivation.


The technique works by doing any task which only takes a minute to do instead of putting things off for another time as soon as you are aware of the task. So instead of trying to tidy everything or doing all the domestic chores or making a host of phone calls do them straight away if they only take a minute. This  stops tasks becoming a worry and allows for lots of success during the day.

Beat Depression with a little organisation

Firstly List all the tasks that need to be done and if any task only takes a minute, do them without delay or complete them as you pass them whilst doing other things. A little organisation is really useful to keep your home tidy, file paperwork and helps to establish routine whilst combating procrastination. This technique is brilliant for treating the effects of depression and aiding the growth in self esteem as it is often little things getting neglected which leads to worsening mental health. Ignoring the small routine tasks results in feeling de-motivating for some people and the prospect of addressing these becomes overwhelming.

The technique should be used in conjunction with being reflective for example the one thing I have done well today and one thing I have learned as it is easy to neglect to recognise the many little jobs that this technique addresses and in order to get most therapeutic benefit from this it is important to reflect on the effectiveness that a person has been during the day by getting little formally overwhelming jobs done.

Return to Home Page from Act As If Principle

Return to Top

Got a question? or want to book your free 30 min appt.....

Contact Dave Here

Contact Positive Hypnosis

Take back control today.

Typical treatments complete within 10 sessions.