Community//

Does Goal Setting Sometimes Make You Feel Stupid?

In 5 minutes I’ll tell you the truth about goal setting. I`ll expose the lies and more lies surrounding goal setting and how goal setting can make you feel like a failure without you noticing it.

The Thrive Global Community welcomes voices from many spheres on our open platform. We publish pieces as written by outside contributors with a wide range of opinions, which don’t necessarily reflect our own. Community stories are not commissioned by our editorial team and must meet our guidelines prior to being published.

In 2020, I set the goal of making $1,000,000. Experts say “Dream BIG” and even the classic book “Think And Grow Rich” by Napoleon Hill said that it starts with your thoughts and that anything is possible. So I dreamt big and set myself an outrageous goal.

Here’s the truth… 

I didn’t hit the $1M mark. Bummer!

The question is why did I set myself up for failure if I knew I wouldn’t be making it? 

It made me feel stupid, shameful, frustrated and sad  The feeling of not good enough is being validated by my lack of success to hit that $1M. I tried to console myself and said that “You did your best”, “It doesn’t matter at least you tried”, “It’s the journey that counts, look at who you have become in the process”. 

Did those thoughts make me feel better about myself? Not really. If anything I feel more like a failure than before.

92% of New Year’s goals fail by 15th January.

Source: http://www.goalband.co.uk/goal-achievement-facts.html

So why should you and I even bother setting goals if 92% of New Years’ goals fail by 15th January?

There are over 50,000 books related on goal setting alone on Amazon. Clearly there is a demand for this but why is goal setting such a big deal? First let me break it down on how goal setting can destroy you even without you noticing it.

How goal setting can destroy you even without you noticing

Despite the contrary belief of the benefits of goal setting, it can have the tendency to make you feel like a failure without you noticing it. But what are the reasons that we didn’t achieve our goals? I’ve uncovered 3 reasons on why people don’t achieve their goals and how it’s destroying their inner confidence.

#1 Out of alignment

Margarent Lynch a Bestselling Author of “Tapping Into Wealth” said that when you’re setting your goals but at the same time your subconscious mind is telling you “It’s not going to happen” or “It’s impossible!”, guess what, It’s not going to happen. 

Why? 

When two things are on the opposite side, it cancels each other. Like if you have a negative and positive energy the result would be neutral. If you have a positive and positive energy the result would be more positive energy. Similarly if you have a negative and a negative energy combined, the result would be more negative energy.

So your goals need to be in alignment with your conscious/subconscious mind in order for your goals to be materialised.

#2 Fear of success

When I set myself up for the $1M goal, there was a part of me that was like “If I hit it, I have to pay more tax!”. This fear of success may be one of the reason why I was not hitting that mark and perhaps unconsciously self-sabotage my own success.

The fear of success or fear of the unknown can be a scary thing. Who are you going to be in that space? What if something bad happens when you get that success? Will the people around me change or leave me when I have success?

Psychologist Suzanne Babbel said that fear of success can be traced to your childhood and it’s important to differentiate between “trauma reaction” and the feelings of excitement (Source: Psychology Today).

In other words, it is worth looking at your past on what is holding you back.

#3 Commitment

You have a dream or a desire of your future but with little to no commitments. What are the chances of your goals happening? Not much.

Setting goals itself is not enough. You have to put the commitment- time, money, action and energy to move closer towards it. Actions produce results.

The key isn’t about taking big, bold and courageous actions because the truth is that only happens every now and then. The key here is to take consistent actions- something that you do on a daily basis to help you move closer to your goals everyday if possible. It’s the consistent little steps that will take you closer to your goals and eventually hitting them.

So here’s an easy prompt for you, what’s one action that you can do today to help you move closer towards your goals?

3 ways that smart people do to hit their goals

A Harvard study shows that 83% of the US population do not have goals

Source: http://www.goalband.co.uk/goal-achievement-facts.html

So you want to be in the top 17% of people that actually hit their goals? The first step is to set your goals. You can set goals in various areas of your life such as career, business, relationship, health, family, spirituality etc. 

Even though I didn’t hit the 1M mark, I did make more money than I made last year- surprise, surprise! In other words setting goals helped me to be in a better place compared to where I was last year. It helped me to expand my comfort zone and have accelerated growth in various areas of my life.

Here’s a quick prompt for you- What is the number one goal that you want to achieve this year?

#2 Write down your goals

A study by the Dominican University of California showed that participants who wrote their goals, actions and commitments associated with their goals and send their friends update to hold them accountable had a 76% success rate in achieving their goals (Source: https://www.newtechnorthwest.com/the-psychology-of-writing-down-goals/).

It’s not enough to just mentally set your goals. You need to write down your goals and if possible have someone to hold you accountable for it.

Here’s how I write down my goals:

  • I start with the word “I”
  • I put a timeline otherwise it’ll just be a whishful thinking
  • I use the present tense

You can use the following format to write your goals:

I __________ (action) _____________ (your goal) by _____________ (timeline)

Example:

I make $1,000,000 by 30 Dec 2021.

Your turn. Go ahead and write down 1 goal that you have this year. Don’t overthink it. Just allow yourself to play and explore a little.

#3 Everyday

Brian Tracy who’s a goal setting expert wrote in his Bestselling book “Goals”, that to achieve your goals faster than you thought possible, you need to write your goals everyday and take actions consistent towards that.

Wow, everyday?

Majority of people write their goals once a year for the new year. Perhaps that’s why many of them didn’t hit their goals.

Imagine writing your goals everyday or the very least once a month or a couple of times a week i.e. more than once a year. You’ll be more focused on taking consistent actions to make it happen. It’s not wishful thinking anymore because it has turned into a commitment worth pursuing. You’ll start to get closer and closer towards the goals and then one day BAM… It Is Done!

Here’s how I write my goals everyday:

  1. I would compose an email to myself. Some people prefer to write it in a book. I just prefer emails because its faster, easier and fits into my lifestyle better
  2. I would list 10-15 goals in the morning. It doesn’t matter if it isn’t in the right order or not. What matters is that it’s written down. Sometimes I even wrote 1 goal for the day. Like I said it doesn’t matter. What matters is it is written down.
  3. Once done, I would send myself that email and I’ll repeat it the next day.

Your turn. Write down one goal either on a paper, journal, email, word doc. Just choose one medium and stick with that.

What happens when you don’t hit your goals?

There is no such thing as a bad goal, only a bad timeline. Here are some of the ways to help you achieve your goals even after you’ve failed to hit them:

  1. Change or extend your timeline
  2. Add new actions to help you get new results
  3. Ask for help
  4. Don’t overthink it. Take one step a day.

You don’t have to know all the 100 steps to hit your goals. You just need to know one and take the action. Then the next step will be revealed to you and you take that action. Then the next step will be revealed to you and you keep on moving forward. Soon you’ll realize that you’ve hit that 100 step and conquered your goals.

Here’s to making all your goals a success!

I would love to hear from you about your goals. Remember to leave a comment, like and share this article too.

    Share your comments below. Please read our commenting guidelines before posting. If you have a concern about a comment, report it here.

    You might also like...

    Community//

    New Year, New You – Setting yourself up for success in 2021

    by Tara Best
    Community//

    2018 Goal setting with the Heart & Mind!

    by Rob O'Donohue
    Community//

    How to Create a Successful Routine That Makes You 10x More Productive

    by Anthony Moore
    We use cookies on our site to give you the best experience possible. By continuing to browse the site, you agree to this use. For more information on how we use cookies, see our Privacy Policy.