Did you set personal and business goals this year? If not, you know you need to! If you have, how are you doing so far? Do you need help in achieving them?
Why People Fail To Achieve Goals
Sometimes we set goals that are just plain unrealistic, but most of the time we just lose track of what we’re doing. Have you found yourself getting sidetracked or overwhelmed? Don’t beat yourself up about it: view this as a sign that you are moving in the right direction.
Yes, I know it sounds strange, but your failure to meet your goals is not entirely your fault. When you set the goals, you didn’t know that “x” was going to happen, or that “y” would be far more time-consuming than you expected. So you got sidetracked - welcome to the human race!
Understand that we all get sidetracked, we all fail to meet our goals sometimes, and we all become overwhelmed by unexpected circumstances. You don’t actually fail until you give up. Let me repeat that: you don’t fail until you give up.
Look on failing to meet your goal as a lesson in how to set and meet goals. If you never fail to meet your goal, your goal wasn’t really worth setting in the first place, but if you fail all the time it can be very discouraging. That’s when you need to reassess your priorities – something is holding you back.
How To Improve The Odds
So will you always fail to meet some of your goals? If you have set SMART goals (Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Risky and Timely), the answer is “Yes”. If you meet all of your goals on time, they were too easy – not “Risky”.
Your aim should be to set goals that you WILL complete, even if they take a little longer than expected. For one goal, you set a time limit of, say, March 31st., and on April 1st. you realize you still haven’t completed it. Don’t abandon the goal – just change the end date to one that now looks achievable.
Revisit your goals regularly, preferably daily, and make sure that you’re staying on track. Periodically, say once a week or once a month, review them to see if they all still fit your purpose. Often, when you do this, you’ll find better ways to achieve your intention with some of the goals using knowledge that you gained since you set them.
Learn From Others
Read and study what you can about Time Management, Goal Setting and Improving Productivity. Spend an hour or so a day on self-improvement. Above all, don’t become discouraged - everybody has days when they feel as though they have achieved nothing: it’s not just you!
I find that reading twenty pages or so of a personal development book just before I go to sleep has a huge effect on my motivation the next day. Tasks that normally seem daunting are exciting, stimulating and interesting, and I tackle them with ease and pleasure. The result is a feeling of achievement at the end of the day – what has happened is that my subconscious has been working out my day for me while I was asleep!
If your goal setting and achievement are not working for you, the chances are you’re just not doing it right. Our tendency when this happens is to blame ourselves for our failure. The problem is not with you, it’s with the process you are using, so learn how to do it right and see how easy and enjoyable it can be.
(This article appeared previously in Ezine Articles.)