If-then planning

Gollwitzer, P. M. (1999). Implementation intentions: Strong effects of simple plans. American Psychologist, 54, 493-503.

Bargh, J. A., Gollwitzer, P. M., Chai, A. L., Barndollar, K., & Troetschel, R. (2001). The automated will: Nonconscious activation and pursuit of behavioral goals. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, 81, 1014-1027.

Bieleke, M., Keller, L., & Gollwitzer, P. M. (2021). If-then planning. European Review of Social Psychology, 32(1), 88–122.


WOOP strategy or mental contrasting and implementation intentions (MCII).

When planning is not enough: Fighting unhealthy snacking habits by mental contrasting with implementation intentions (MCII). European Journal of Social Psychology 40(7): 1277-1293.
A short goal-pursuit intervention to improve physical capacity: A randomized clinical trial in chronic back pain patients." Pain 149(3): 444-452.
Self-regulation strategies improve self-discipline in adolescents: benefits of mental contrasting and implementation intentions."Educational Psychology: 1-10.
Free fantasies about the future and the emergence of developmental goals. Action and self-development: Theory and research through the life span. R. M. L. J. Brandstädter. London, Thousand Oaks: Sage.: 315-342.
Mental Contrasting and Goal Commitment: The Mediating Role of Energization.Personality and Social Psychology Bulletin 35(5): 608-622.
Self-regulation of commitment to reduce cigarette consumption: Mental contrasting of future with reality." Psychology & Health 25(8): 961 - 977.
Self-regulation of goal setting: turning free fantasies about the future into binding goals." J Pers Soc Psychol 80(5): 736-753.
Mental contrasting and the self-regulation of helping relations. Social Cognition 28(4): 490-508.
Physical activity in women: effects of a self-regulation intervention.Am J Prev Med 36(1): 29-34.
Intervention effects of information and self-regulation on eating fruits and vegetables over two years. Health Psychology 29(3): 274-283.

A Meta-Analysis of the Effects of Mental Contrasting With Implementation Intentions on Goal Attainment Front. Psychol., 12 May 2021 Sec. Personality and Social Psychology

Mental Contrasting with Implementation Intentions Increases Goal-Attainment in Individuals with Mild to Moderate DepressionCognitive Therapy and Research volume 40, pages 557–564 (2016)
Mental contrasting instigates goal pursuit by linking obstacles of reality with instrumental behavior

Memory cards

Closure of autobiographical memories moderates their directive effect on behaviour Memory 2010 Jan;18(1):40-8.

Soljana Çili & Lusia Stopa (2014): The retrieval of self-defining memories is associated with the activation of specific working selves, Memory, DOI: 10.1080/09658211.2014.882955

Combating Loneliness With Nostalgia: Nostalgic Feelings Attenuate Negative Thoughts and Motivations Associated With Loneliness Front. Psychol., 23 June 2020

Is Nostalgia a Past or Future-Oriented Experience? Affective, Behavioral, Social Cognitive, and Neuroscientific EvidenceFront Psychol. 2020; 11: 1133.

Nostalgia as a Psychological Resource for a Meaningful LifeThe Happy Mind: Cognitive Contributions to Well-Being pp 427-442| Cite as

The mnemonic muse: Nostalgia fosters creativity through openness to experienceJournal of Experimental Social Psychology Volume 59, July 2015, Pages 1-7

Back to the Future: Nostalgia Increases Optimism. Personality and Social Psychology Bulletin, 39(11), 1484-1496.

Letters of Gratitude: Improving Well-Being through Expressive Writing.
November 2009 Journal of Writing Research 1(3):181-198

Mental Contrasting

Strategies of Setting and Implementing Goals. Mental Contrasting and Implementation Intentions Social psychological foundations of clinical psychology / ed. by James E. Maddux ... (Eds.). - New York : Guilford, 2010. - pp. 114-135. - ISBN 978-1-606-23679-6

Mental Contrasting and Goal Commitment: The Mediating Role of Energization Personality and Social Psychology Bulletin 35(5):608-22

Mental contrasting as a behaviour change technique: a systematic review protocol paper of effects, mediators and moderators on health Syst Rev. 2016; 5: 201.

Therapeutic metaphors

Therapeutic metaphors: Theories, empirical efficacy and underlying mechanisms Advances in Psychological Science ›› 2022, Vol. 30 ›› Issue (7): 1546-1560.