Why we give up on our goals

I am a goal setter type of person. I am a list, plan maker, and all that related stuff.

But my “small” problem is … that I am not a goal achiever.

I would get inspired, set an ambitious goal, make a plan, start doing it for a day or week or even a month and then … I would lose inspiration, skip one day off plan, then two days, and then I would give up on it completely.

Feelings of guilt and unworthiness would follow: I can’t keep my word to myself. I can’t achieve goals as other people achieve. Why do I get bored so quickly if a few weeks ago I could not fall asleep from the excitement of my dream?

The reason behind all our procrastination, from my point of view, is very simple – we don’t really know how does it feel and what does it take to be successful.

What does it mean to live great, not mediocre life?

We don’t have a bigger picture. We set the goal to become an executive, or to start our business, or to lose weight. But we don’t know why we are doing it.

I set the goal of earning more money. That would be cool! I would be able to buy a flight ticket to any destination I want. I would be able to visit my family more often. I would be able to buy those cute armani/guess/ … clothes I always wanted.

But then my gremlins creep in:

ah, money is not that important. I don’t really need that clothes. I see my family often enough. I travel quite a lot.

I set the goal to exercise daily. But then:

Why do I really need that? I am looking great as I am now. What would it change if I looked a bit tighter?

We don’t love ourselves enough to demand more, so subconsciously we keep ourselves away from success. We are fine with the life as it is.

We are also afraid to look imperfect, so the moment we make the first step and fail – we get immediately discouraged.

I did not become a successful writer after writing 5 blog posts! What am I doing wrong? I will never become successful, I’d better stop wasting time.

I did not become a professional swimmer after taking lessons for months! I will never learn how to swim.

We set ambitious goals and it feels so great at first to have such big dreams! But when we make that first step forward – we see the huge gap between now and our blurry goal-in-future, and then it overwhelms and weighs us down. And we get back to “I don’t need it anyway” gremlins.

The only cure for that is to set one single goal: get maximum satisfaction from each moment of your life. Enjoy the process and movement of energy. Enjoy the trip to your destination the same as the destination itself.

We can, and probably should, set some measurable milestones. Have 1000 followers in 3 months. Lose 5 kilos in 6 months. Save 5% of your monthly income.

But we should have them only as road signs – we are on the right track! And not to get discouraged by not being there yet.

Set the goals which will bring you pure joy during the process. Our brain is designed to avoid any hard work, and if daily steps to your desire sound like a struggle – you ll probably never get it done.

I know I don’t get it done. The only things I managed to stick with were those which bring me joy during, or right after one-time doing(like running). I still, very often, have to kick my own ass to do things, but it’s easy to do so if  I remember that it always brings me pleasure.

And it is also important to remember, that doing anything for the first time will not bring you an euphoria. You have to try it, again and again, to really feel the taste.

Keep moving, discovering and growing. Don’t beat yourself up for “not being there yet”. Celebrate how far you’ve already gotten.

 

 

 

 

 

 

2 thoughts on “Why we give up on our goals

  1. I think that it all comes down to certain expectations, and also some romanticized idea of what it takes to achieve a certain goal. They’re closely related. You know the cliche about “do what you love, love what you do?” Well, people expect to always love what they do. To have this perfect relationship with their goals… it does work like that. You must use a multitude of emotions and states… you have to keep going because you know your why, you know that moods are temporary and you will not give up because today you don’t feel like it.

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    1. Yes, sometimes we feel down, lazy, sad and don’t want to do anything. In this case I let those feelings in and I sit with them for a while. But when you love what you are doing – it’s easy to come back to inspired state, because you know that that thing brings you pleasure actually! So you go and do it, just to feel good. Again and again. You enjoy the process and meanwhile you come closer to a milestone

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