Have you set goals for your business, personal life, career, finances only to find that you keep hitting a wall and you’re not sure why? You know the saying “if you fail to plan, you plan to fail”. Setting goals is fundamental to being happy and successful on your terms. You’ve developed your strategy – but keep missing the mark. This article gives five reasons why achieving your goals is proving so elusive.
1. You didn’t really want to achieve the goal
Hello? That’s right. Beneath your intention was really something else. Sometimes we set goals in response to cultural/societal expectations. You may want someone else’s approval ie your partner, parents, colleagues. “If I do/achieve this then X will love/like/ appreciate me more”
The end result is often self-sabotage, because the goal wasn’t crafted with your true desires in mind. So ask yourself who or what are you setting this goal for and ensure that It’s something that you want – not for someone else.
You set a goal with the best of intentions – but it clashes with unconscious negative beliefs which stop you from following through. For example, you may decide to start networking to increase the profile of your business. But guess what? You hate the idea of promoting yourself in this way, because you have negative beliefs about what networking involves.
Or you may want to get a better grip on your finances and attain financial freedom, but you have unconscious beliefs about rich people (arrogant, uncaring, selfish etc). This beliefs silently trip you up and then you wonder why you didn’t achieve the goal. Learn how to identify your hidden negative beliefs and reframe them so that they work for you.
3. Caught by the Value Vampires!
You were had by the Value Vampires. They are the naysayers, the doom and gloom merchants who influenced you and killed your idea in its infancy. They planted seeds of doubt in your mind and then you started to water them! Put up a “no entry” sign to Value Vampires or don’t tell them your aims and goals too early, before they’ve had time to develop. You know who these people are!
4. No real motivation to achieve
Setting a goal should turn you on and get the juices going! If It’s approached as a “should do” “ought to” – you increase your chances of not achieving it. Link the goal into a bigger picture, wider vista. Ensure that you begin to feel excited about it – imagine the possibilities that it opens up. You can try and set goals in isolation, but they work best when they’re part of something bigger that you’re really enthusiastic about.
5. Didn’t consider obstacles or challenges
If you didn’t consider the possible obstacles/challenges when setting the goal – this makes it a lot easier to fall back and give up when you meet difficulties. This isn’t an excuse to make excuses to stop you doing it altogether! Just to take a slightly detached view of what could get in the way. Ask yourself what challenges you might face and how you’ll deal with them – offense is the best form of defense!
And… sometimes you didn’t achieve a goal because things happened which were outside of your control. Shift happens – the best laid plans go awry. Other things take priority and it was right that they should do so. Maybe you weren’t ready to achieve that goal or it wasn’t right for you.
The most positive aspect of not achieving your goals is what it teaches you; what you learn about yourself along the way. Next time you don’t achieve a goal – look at the above reasons, see if any relate to you, learn the lesson and move on.
©2003 by Julie Plenty
This article was originally written: February, 2003