Why Goals Fail

Why Goals Fail

I just read an article entitled “What causes most goals to fail?” It explained how the author tried a painting class. Everyone else in the class excelled and the comment from the teacher on his painting was “Well, isn’t that interesting.”

My immediate reaction was, “No wonder he quit!”

Goals Need Support

When we have a goal, we need to have supportive, encouraging people around us who know what the goal is. Not everyone around us is going to “get” our goals. They won’t understand what that goal means to us…how important it is to our physical, emotional, or mental health.

They may look at your goal and say “Well, isn’t that interesting.” or, “Really, you think you can do that?” or they may even go so far as, “What makes you think you can achieve that? You’ve never done anything like that and don’t have the skills. Don’t bother.”

All of these things are THEIR OPINION and have NOTHING to do with you or your ability to achieve your goal! That teacher could have just as easily said, “Great color choices! Here’s a technique to improve the clarity.” I’ll bet if the teacher said something like that, the author of that article would have returned to the class and improved his painting skills over time.

Not to put the teacher down, they had a class to teach and a certain amount of time in which to teach it. I don’t know if it was presented as a beginner’s class or not. But it feels like, from the author’s experience, that there was a level of knowledge expected that the author didn’t have.

The point is, when you’re starting out on a new goal (or maybe an old goal that was sitting on the shelf) you need gentle encouragement, not snide remarks. You need the time and space to hone the skills required to obtain the goal. You need the pat on the back and the loving dusting off when you fall off the horse. And you need the occasional kick in the pants to get you back on track.

It’s NOT a failure

Goals should not be abandoned because you feel shame and not good enough, but unfortunately this is the underlying reason goals “fail.” It is NOT a failure if:

  • Your initial goal shifts.
  • Your goal is abandoned because your life took a different turn.
  • it didn’t work out “this time.” 

LEARN from what didn’t work and use that knowledge to fuel your next attempt. Mr. Heinz had to make 46 ketchup failures before he landed on the very successful Heinz 47.

I recently had a coach and mentor tell me, “The magic happens after the 20th one.” Meaning, do something at least 20 times before making any kind of judgment.

So go out there and whack that tennis ball, paint those paintings, launch your business…but do it at least 20 times before making ANY kind of judgment. Take the time to learn…and be sure to share it with people who can understand it’s importance to you and help you nurture your dream into being.

Find Your People

There are groups out there, with people just like you, willing to bring you into the fold and help you nurture your dreams and goals. Go out and find your people and join in the fun.

If you’re looking for a group to help you define your life and business goals and support you along the way, Goals Bootcamp 2023 will be opening registration on November 18th.  To celebrate, we’re having a free Goal Challenge on November 16-18th. To join in the fun, just download the Goal Template we’ll be using, and I’ll send you more information.

Remember: Keep your eyes on the horizon, your hands on the wheel, and your foot on the GAS!

Let’s do this!!

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