Individuals with schizophrenia often have trouble engaging in daily tasks or setting goals for themselves, and a new study suggests the reason might be their difficulty in assessing the amount of effort required to complete tasks.

The research, detailed in an article published in the Journal of Abnormal Psychology, can assist health professionals in countering motivation deficits among patients with schizophrenia and help those patients function normally by breaking up larger, complex tasks into smaller, easier-to-grasp ones.

Researchers found that, while people with schizophrenia engage in low-impact, pleasurable goals — such as watching TV or eating food for enjoyment — as much as others, they have greater difficulty with more complex undertakings or goals requiring more effort.

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