You carefully set your goals, you created a wonderful plan but a few months down the line you have no results to show for it. Why do goals fail? Why is it that some people cannot follow through with their goals? If these are the questions on your mind, I’d like to help.
While I cannot pinpoint why your own goals failed, I can show you the potential mistakes you are making. Using this list you can go on and identify which mistake is causing you trouble. I hope that you will pick out at some tips here that will help you go on and slay your goals.
These are all mistakes I have made at one point in my own life. I won’t lie to you that I have overcome all of them completely because it is a learning process that takes time. However, I have found ways to work around these mistakes and get better results. That is what I want to share with you in this post. So here we go.
1. Setting unrealistic goals
At the beginning of last month, my goal for the blog was to publish 2 to 3 posts weekly until I have twenty posts on the blog and then slow it down to at least 1 post a week. This was a really good plan until something happened. One day I sat down to write and my writing juices were flowing so well, I ended up writing 3 posts in one sitting. That was huge, and I thought to myself, I could do this daily! Ha!
My new goal became publishing one blog post daily. *Unrealistic goal alert* I made the decision on a whim and hardly put thought to how hard I would have to work to achieve this. I will tell you for sure that starting this blogging journey has given me quite the experience. Extreme excitement, anxiety, frustration, joy, and fulfilment, repeat. Blogging in itself is an exercise in self-development. If you don’t believe me, try it :).
I only managed to publish daily for a week and even then it was a struggle. Then I was back to posting once per week.
You can check out all my March posts down below, beautiful products of my sweat. I am proud of what I was able to do but in that week I also got a reminder of what good goals are not.
There is a difference between pushing the limits or getting out of your comfort zone and being downright unrealistic. In this case, my goal to publish daily was unrealistic and short lived.
Here is what I learned: when you are setting your goals, even in excitement, give it some thought. Make sure your goals are actually achievable within the time frame you set without causing unnecessary pressure. You will have yourself to thank for it.
Overestimating how much you can do in a day and underestimating how much you can do long-term
In line with setting unrealistic goals comes another issue. Overestimating how much you can do in a day while underestimating how much you can do in a month or a year/long term. Are you guilty of this? You have your annual goals set but you really want to see the results happening quickly.
So, you add more tasks to your daily to-do list hoping that if you do more, your big break will happen faster. Well, I am sure you know what the result is- frustration, overwhelm and burnout. Packing more into your day does not necessarily translate into efficiency.
[clickToTweet tweet=”Packing more into your day does not necessarily translate into efficiency. #efficiency #settinggoals #goalsettingmistakes #whygoalsfail” quote=” Packing more into your day does not necessarily translate into efficiency.”]
I am guilty of this. And I don’t know why we do it to ourselves! Always thinking you can be superhuman and do a ton of things in a day when in reality completing one is an achievement. Maybe it is because we are optimistic beings.
In my case, I have found myself justifying it by, “I just need to manage my time better and I will be able to do two more things.” Even with better time management skills, there is a limit to how much you can do in a day. The secret to lasting success is on the incremental progress you make over time.
Here is the way I have found to work around this problem:
Set only ONE important goal for your day
Just clear one goal daily. This might look simple but it is not easy. You need to identify just one goal for each day and focus on that, in a month’s time the difference will be huge.
The truth is, there is no trick for clear out your daily to-do list like magic. But you don’t want to end up frustrated on a daily basis because you haven’t achieved your goals for the day. I have used this tip and it has worked magic to my mental and emotional well-being. Just one goal for your day is enough. You will have more focus, and be less overwhelmed.
Okay, we have spent some time on this first mistake but it is really because it is so important. Implementing this can change your life, I promise you.
Let’s get on to look at the other mistakes that could be holding you back. You probably know them already but let’s just make sure you know how to deal with them. You wanna slay your goals, right?
2. Not writing your goals down
The fact that you are here reading this tells me you are pretty serious about your goals. I would be surprised if you don’t have your goals written down. I will be writing a complete post about why you should write your goals down and link it here.
You probably want to save this post and come back in a week’s time to check it out.
If your goal is not written down somewhere then you are not serious enough about it. I won’t even add more to this because it is that simple. If you want to achieve it, then you have to write it down. I love myself this planner which has some space for me to review my weekly goals. It has a column for successes (where I jot down my weekly wins) and another one for ‘what I can do better’. I love it.
3. Taking too long before you review your goals
Reviewing your goals is just as important as setting and implementing them. If you do not review your goals often enough then you won’t realize when you have fallen off track or when a particular strategy is not working. I recommend doing at minimum weekly reviews to look back at the week and see what you can improve. I personally do daily reviews for my daily goals and it has positively impacted how I proceed with my plans.
Must read: How to set and accomplish your goals.
4. Lack of accountability
Accountability is one thing that is forgotten or ignored by many people. Everyone wants to be independent and make it on their own. The truth is, it is difficult to achieve success alone, you need a supportive community around you.
Identify at least one person in your life that you can be accountable with on your goals. This is someone who can ask you difficult questions about what you are doing. Their intention is not to discourage you but to help you clarify your vision and achieve your goals. You accountability partner will help you stay on course and support you through the days that you are feeling discouraged.
[clickToTweet tweet=”The secret to lasting success is in the incremental progress you make over time. #progress #success #growth #whygoalsfail” quote=” The secret to lasting success is in the incremental progress you make over time.”]
These are the top 4 goal setting mistakes I have encountered and the tips to deal with them. I hope that you find them useful for your current state.
Which other mistakes have you made that made you fail to achieve your goals? Any other reasons why goals fail? Let me know in the comments below.
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