One way of giving yourself a strong incentive to reach your goal is to commit to pay money to someone if you fail. Better yet, you can specify that you will have to pay a certain sum to a cause that you detest. If you support protection of the world’s rain forests, you could decide that your penalty payment will go to an organization that favors commercial development of the Amazon. ... Human decision-making is complex. On our own, our tendency to yield to short-term temptations, and even to addictions, may be too strong for our rational, long-term planning.