The Two-Hour Rule

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Success focused people tend to be harder on themselves than most, especially when things don’t go as planned. When you experience a setback, do you find it difficult to get re-motivated and jump back in and continue working? If so, you might suffer from the limit violation effect. Overcoming the limit violation effect (LVE) will increase your willpower and free up your motivation, but it does requires a conscious effort.

Here are the top 3 steps to overcoming the LVE:
1. Slow down
2. Look at the big picture
3. Forgive yourself

If you haven’t gone through those first three steps, watch this video on the limit violation effect first. If you’ve tried those and find you’re still experiencing a lack of willpower, it’s time to invoke the 2-hour rule.

People who live a high-demand life tend to beat themselves up for longer than they should. If you keep reliving setbacks in your head, ask yourself, “Was that more than two hours ago?” If so, you have to let it go. While it’s ok to feel sad, upset or angry about a mistake, you can’t let those feelings take over your life. Continuing to analyze the situation often only leads to a greater loss of willpower and increased stress.

Staying positive and moving forward in times of stress is important. In order to transform your negative momentum into motivation, you have to focus on the present. Forgive yesterday so you can work on today.



Andy Core is a credentialed, award-winning thought leader on increasing employee engagement, productivity, and wellness motivation. His talent lies in helping hard-working, conscientious adults thrive at work and in their personal lives.

Andy also wrote the book Change Your Day, Not Your Life, a guide to sustained motivation and more productivity.

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Change Your Day, Not Your Life
A realistic guide to sustained motivation, more productivity, and the art of working well
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About Andy Core
Author and speaker on work-life balance, productivity and wellbeing
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