Goal setting hacks that make the difference
If you started off the year like some, you set out a list of resolutions or goals. Maybe instead you decided to make a commitment to yourself to change one small habit for the month of January. If you are in business, you might have ended off the year with a planning session to set the goals for the upcoming year. Regardless, January always seems to be the month for setting goals.
Setting goals never seems to be that tough of chore. Most of us are full of great ideas about what we want to accomplish, about the behaviours we know we should change and if there isn’t enough of that, can tell others what they should achieve. Goal setting is simple. What isn’t, is having the motivation to achieve them.
I get asked over and over, why it is so difficult to achieve a goal. When asked, I remind them there are goals that, in fact, they found pretty easy to achieve. Most people agree. There are some goals that are easy to achieve, but for everyone, others that seem impossible.
Here are some of the main reasons:
Want to want –Sometimes we identify goals that are things that we “want” to “want” to achieve, but it doesn’t mean we REALLY want to. There is a difference. If you have a goal that you truly want (from the top of your head to the bottom of your feet), then it is easy to stay motivated to get it. It is when you are dealing with a goal that you only kinda want, where you have a problem. This could be a goal you are setting to please someone else. It could be a goal that someone else assigned you. It could even be a goal that we are afraid of the consequences in achieving it. All these things can zap our motivation to achieving that troublesome goal.
You haven’t built a “why” – The reason we do anything generally comes from a compelling “why”. For example, you get out of bed each day to go to work…why…because you want to be able to pay your bills and buy the things you want to buy. You go to the gym, even when you don’t feel like it…why…because you know it will improve your health and vitality. There are lots of things you do, that you might not want to do, but because of the compelling “why” you do it anyway. When the “why” isn’t there, and the going gets tough, it is too easy to simply just make up an excuse or to bury your head. The compelling “why” has to have a great impact, to counteract the comfort of doing nothing.
No consequences – The consequences of not achieving the goal does not “out way” the pain of doing it. This one is a little funny because sometimes our brains trick us into believing the consequences aren’t there or should I say, aren’t there now. Let’s pick achieving a certain sales goal. You put off doing the things you need to do, telling yourself that you have lots of time and will do it “tomorrow”. Next thing you know it is the end of the quarter and you tell yourself, that next quarter you will make it up. You know there is a looming consequence, but because it isn’t immediately present, you procrastination sets in. After a while you tell yourself it isn’t important. Consequences give us the pressure or pain needed to out way not taking the action required.
As I said, setting a goal is easy, but to achieve them you need to be the one that really wants it, you need to have a compelling reason why and there needs to be more pain in not achieving it than the pain that is associated with getting there. If you build your goals with these three components in mind, you will definitely increase the odds in getting there!
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