Why’s so difficult setting goals and why do most people fail?
Number of books and articles have been written and lectured about goal setting, yet, it’s still difficult topic to be grasp by many people, notably younger ones. I wish if I was taught these stuff at school! But I wasn’t, neither my kids, nevertheless, it is not an excuse to stop working on our personal development after we complete schools, academic education, etc. Right?
In a nutshell, I will touch about the following items:
1. Defining goals and goals setting
2. Why do most people do not set their goals?
3. Understanding nuances of effective goal setting
4. Why do your goals fail in most of the cases?
5. Guidelines for setting effective goals
6. Types of goals
Let’s start with the purpose of goal setting? The purpose is to become exactly what and how you want to be. In other words – Have your goals; Think about them and review them regularly!
Goal vs. goal setting
Goal is a point marking an end of your race – it could be an object or an effort, destination or an ambition you wish to reach. Right?
Goal setting on the other hand is a process of deciding WHAT you want to accomplish and devising a plan HOW to achieve a result you desire!
Goal setting is very useful and powerful tool that can help you to have a direction in your life and once you have a direction, life becomes lots easier!
Why don’t I set up my goals?
That’s a very good question. I can tell you that there are a multitude of reasons why is so. Here’s a list of possible reasons:
– Generally pessimistic attitude: towards your goal, life, everything;
– Fear of failure;
– Total ignorance;
– Lack of knowledge about this theme – goal setting;
– Lack of ambition – you prefer to stick to your ”comfort zone” – it may be even miserable, you still prefer it rather than swimming towards unknown waters;
– Low self-esteem – there we can argue about your believes and values system, or as I preferred to say, your ”programmes”
– Fear of rejection – you prefer not to risk rather than being potentially rejected!
What do you think? Do you recognize some of these?
Why do you fail in accomplishing your goals?
First of all, you may not have complete picture and clarity on what is it that you really really want. Hence, you ask for clarity. Secondly, you are not serious player if you think that just thinking about goals setting is enough. Guess what? It is not! As long as you do not write them down one by one, you will fail.
It could be one of these things to answer to your ”why do I always fail”?
– You see no clear rewards;
– Your goals may not be realistic;
– You are keep changing your goals all the time whereby your mind machine, pardon me, your brain get confused in such cases. It’s normal. You are not stupid, you just do not have a consistency and clarity.
– It may be that you have no ownership and an accountability, hence, get it for yourself, not for others!
– You have no precise timeline. If it is so, you know what? Most likely you are still not sure what you really want!
…and so one, and so forth. You know what? If you keep in mind why setting goals benefits you, it may be lots easier.
So, why and in what way do goals setting benefit my life?
First of all, as outlined, you know what’s your life direction such as that you can freely and fully take control over your life instead of being controlled by some ”external forces” or people.
Secondly, it will help you to focus on important things;
Thirdly, you will make good and sound decisions;
…it will help you to finish tasks efficiently;
…it will help you to become more self confident;
…it will lead you closer to the success!
Types of goals
You may be confused also due to lack of knowledge about the types of goals. Basically, there are the two key types of goals:
a) Personal goals
b) Professional goals
Imagine a pyramid – on the bottom of this pyramid would be your short or a mini term goals (1-2 years). In the centre of the pyramid, are your medium term goals (2-5 years) and on the top is your long term goal/s as a milestones of your life you want to acquire (above 5 years)
Let’s see now what steps are required for your goal setting?
Basically we can talk about the two-part process, which comprises of:
1. Deciding WHAT you want to do
2. Working at accomplishing whatever goal you have set for yourself!
In this process, you need to devise an efficient Action Plan which in most of the cases remains one of the most problematic step in an overall goal setting process.
You may devise a simple sheet/statement. Remember please, IN WRITTEN!
First, define your goals, be it:
-My attitude (in general)
…and make sure you go through it again and again!
Your goal statement sheet needs to have three key questions:
First, WHAT you want to achieve?
Second, WHY do you want that?
Third, HOW to achieve – in other words, you need a good strategy!
And last but not least, let me tell you the life facts about the goal setting:
It is a matter of very specific, realistic goals that will work for you best. What’s less attractive in the whole process is that it takes time for a change to occur or become an established habit or an attitude. Pleasing other people do not always work, right? Yes, maybe for some time, but certainly not in the longer run! And the most important fact, at least for me, is that the roadblocks do not always mean failure!
Without goals and a plan to reach them, you are more like a ship that has set sail, with no destination. Agree?