Acting by a deadline: The interplay between deadline distance and movement induced goals

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle


Human awareness of the passing of time leads to psychological processes designed to handle these inherent temporal limitations. Deadlines serve to energize desired courses of action and are likely to exert effects by leveraging general goals. Movement (e.g., walking, running) and stasis (e.g., standing, sitting), for example, may elicit general action and inaction goals that affect unrelated, time-constrained decisions. Across one field experiment and three lab experiments, prior movement or control conditions (vs. stasis) were associated with general action goals, which in turn had the perceived motivational fit with a behavior with a close deadline. As a result, movement or control conditions (vs. stasis) produced a higher probability of enacting behaviors (e.g., redemption of a coupon, intention to receive a vaccine) by a close deadline.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number103852
JournalJournal of Experimental Social Psychology
StatePublished - Nov 2019



  • Activity
  • Deadlines
  • Goals
  • Predicting behavior
  • Time

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Social Psychology
  • Sociology and Political Science

Cite this