It’s not you. But it takes you to change it.
You set your goal with all the right intentions. You are determined, serious and give them your best shot. You don’t lack for smarts. You are a hard worker and doing all the right things, but you still fail at achieving those goals.
Why? Why then do you fail at your goals when you are (yes you ARE) smart and driven and have good intentions?
- You want to leave your dead-end job and your horrid boss for better opportunities, but you just can’t take the leap.
- You want to get out of a bad relationship that is destroying your self-esteem and robbing you of so much happiness, but you just can’t pull the plug.
- You want to put an end to your bad eating habits and start living healthy once and for all, but you keep repeating the old patterns without much success.
It’s so hard not to want to give up and forget the whole thing and harder still to keep up your pretenses when the rest of your world watches on.
For what it’s worth, I Know How You Feel. Which is precisely why I can’t let you give up on yourself.
When I first
started became obsessed with the goal of having my own business, and earning my living outside of the corporate structure, I was clueless. It’s easier to admit it now than it was then. I was determined, hard-working, brilliant in my own way but still clueless as to how to achieve this goal.
What you get by achieving your goals is not as important as what you become by achieving your goals. ~Henry David Thoreau
The turning point for me happened when I finally stopped getting so wrapped up in my goals and making the goal such a big part of my identity and self-worth. Only then I was able to relax and gained an impartial angle to see the flaws in my approach which made it very difficult to achieve my goals.
Your achievements do not define you. You are already a person of success, a person of value and worth.
Your achievements just show you what you are capable of, and how you can best serve the world.
So you are failing at your goals? You keep trying and nothing works? Fine. You are not a lesser person for it. Now let’s get on with a new approach that helps you achieve your goals.
Simplify it with this 4-step success formula
As much as I appreciate that my goals – and whether I achieve them or not – do not define me, and respect that boundary so it doesn’t mess with my happiness, I am madly obsessed about achieving my goals too.
So over the years, I’ve refined my goal setting approach with this success formula. The steps are in the right order and this applies to all types of goals, as long as you stick to the formula.
Step 1: Create a healthy distance between your goals and your self-worth.
The worst thing you can do, which keeps you from achieving your goals, is connecting your identity and self-worth to your goals and getting wrapped up in your goals so much that you can’t think or see clearly anymore.
Case in point: Ever been head over heels in love? Were you thinking clearly then? Aha! Me neither!
Associating your self-worth to the end results of your goals is bad no matter which way you lean. Just because you are a super achiever does not mean you are a better person or a person of higher self-worth. The same is true if you are an under-achiever.
Create a healthy distance between your goals and your self-worth. This way you can set your emotions free so you can think more clearly about your goals.
Step 2: Re-evaluate your goal and this time, do it in private.
You know how some people set goals with group consensus? Don’t be one of them. This is not a democracy. You don’t need majority vote of friends or family to do whatever it is YOU – and yes YOU and YOU alone want to achieve in your life.
In other words, drop stupid goals. Pick up true goals.
If all your goals are true, then this one doesn’t apply to you, super, let’s move on!
Step 3: Adopt a new approach to your goal if the previous one failed.
Stop going about your goal the same way, expecting different results. You’ve heard this many times but it bears repeating because human behavior needs reinforcement of useful logic.
The definition of insanity is doing the same thing over and over and expecting different results. ~Albert Einstein
So learn from the failure without giving up on the goal by examining the approach now. How did you go about achieving your goal?
Step 4: Get vested in the process and get measured on the progress.
Have you done all first 3 steps? Only then are you ready for step 4.
I have a mastermind friend who is driven, super smart and a big-time achiever but he refuses to commit to dates. He can’t stand deadlines. He is committed to the process instead, not focused on end results.
So forget the achievement part for now and shift your focus to 2 critical (and more interesting) areas:
1. The process – the series of actions and steps that you take towards your goal.
2. The progress – the accomplishments you have at each milestone, a measure of improvement that shows you are moving forward.
Combining the process and progress with a focus on affirmations and meditation that reminds you about what you are doing RIGHT.
A little proof behind this success formula.
Here’s one crazy goal I accomplished using this process: Meeting a 6-week deadline on my first book deal with a traditional publisher. Now I want to hear about your goals and help you get past whatever is holding you back so you create your own breakthroughs in goal setting.