7 Silly Things People Do To Mess Up Their Goals

By Ellesse

No one wants to mess up his goals on purpose. But do you know you’re set to do so if you indulge in these, whether or not it’s intentional?

(1) Don’t Have A Strong Reason

It really sounds silly. How can anyone not know why they’re pursuing the goal that they’re already working on? But it’s true. A friend who’s completing her masters is still unsure of where she wants to take it to. And if you don’t have strong reasons for the goal, you’ll likely give up when faced with obstacles. The lack of passion shows. You’ll end up jumping from one goal to another without even giving it a second thought.

(2) Tell the Whole World About it

No, don’t get me wrong. I’m not saying it’s wrong to announce your goal to your supportive friends and family. In fact, it’s a great way to lock in your commitment. But if the “Whole World” includes your cynical friends who can’t wait to jump at your failure, it’s better left unsaid. Their undesirable comments can be a torture to the ears, may make you feel lousy about yourself and in some worst case scenarios, cause you to abandon the goal when you’re just about to achieve success. Why do they want to do that? Because your passion to pursue what you want in life dwarf their own existence and reveal their insecurity in doing the same. Don’t give them a chance. Select the people you confide in, wisely.

(3) Not SMART enough

In case you’re wondering, I’m referring to your goals :) A lot of people knows about the SMART principles, but most of them don’t practice it. They’re either too skeptical that it’ll work or too lazy to write them down. That’s rather silly isn’t it? They’ll rather waste a lifetime pursuing fuzzy goals than to spend half a day drafting good solid ones.

(4) Comparing with Other People

For goodness sake, stop comparing with others. So what if their goals are similar to yours? We’re unique individuals. And so are our goals. The fact that you’re comparing shows that you don’t have a good benchmark mechanism designed within your goal plan, so much so that you’ll need to resort to comparing with others to know how well you’re progressing. Since each person’s goal is structured based on how much one can stomach, you may end up burnt out or achieving lesser than what you ought to be. Competition with others also breeds an impression of scarcity, that is likely to bring more of which into your life.

(5) Focus on Multiple Goals At One Time

Unless you’re Superman, don’t attempt to pursue more than 1 goal at 1 time. This is not about multi-tasking. This is about staying focused. Some of you may say “I don’t want to work on one goal after another, it’s such a time waster! I want to achieve the greatest number of goals in the SAME period of time”. That’s wonderful in theory. But in practice? A well designed goal plan for one goal usually includes about 10 subtasks or more. Having multiple goals means you’re probably spreading yourself too thin. When that happens, you’ll be so washed out to really explore the intricacies of each goal. And if you stop doing that, you’ll be losing out on the creative and valuable suggestions your mind can possibly generate in improving your pursuit. That, in my opinion is a much greater loss than the imaginary time savings of working multiple goals (i.e. if you actually succeed in doing so).

(6) Too Fussy Over the Methodology

Are you one of those people who goes around looking for the perfect goal setting approach? The truth is, no approach is a good approach if all you do is just download the tutorial or software and leave it lying on your bookshelf or computer archives. I used to behave like that, scouring personal development books and looking into the best methods of setting goals. As I delve deeper into the whole subject, I realized something. Most approaches only serve as guidelines. You can try them, cast them away or tweak them to suit your own unique circumstances and needs. No matter what you do, the crux is to take action. Don’t wait for the perfect methodology. It probably doesn’t exist. Even if there is, by the time you really found one, you would never be able to recoup the lost opportunities given up while waiting.

(7) Leaving it on “Hibernation” Mode

You’ve just completed your goal plan. To reward yourself for the great work, you’ve decided to take a break and put your goal on hold. That’s nice. Except that you left it on hold for – a little bit too long. And when inertia starts setting in, you’ll have to rework on your momentum again. Yes, again. That’s why, in my opinion, instead of letting the enthusiasm slip by leaving it for too long, do something about your goal immediately after you’ve done with the plan. If your goal’s to setup your own business, begin writing your business proposal. If your goal’s to develop your own blog, start brainstorming on the topic. Whatever it is, just do something. And by doing this, you keep the energy level high, pushing you an inch closer to its achievement every time you finish a subtask.


4 Responses to “7 Silly Things People Do To Mess Up Their Goals”

  1. Reika at 3:23 pm

    It is true that sometimes one stops from pursuing the goals set out of procastination. Two easy mottos to remember are that Easy Does It and One day at a Time.
    With those two in mind I want to change my world. I have started so I hope others can find the momentum too. If not, just use post it qoutes and affirmation techniques. They keep the mojo going.

  2. Linda at 7:26 pm

    do you suppose that procrastination is due to fear of success or criticism, as much as fear of failure? I hear that success brings a new set of challenges! how do you overcome fear of success as well as failure? me? I’d teach a seminar on how to persist through all kinds of failures. winners don’t give up. But they do take breaks now and then. —Linda M. Smith

  3. Ellesse at 4:47 am

    @Linda We tend to overthink things at times. Me too when I first wrote this article. Haha! Actually, people who’re overwhelmed with procrastination is not just “desperate” enuff when it comes to their goals. If you’re able to cultivate that kind of burning desire+desperation+anxiety with achieving ur goal, procrastination is a non issue. You don’t have to tell someone – whose family of eight would die of hunger if he doesn’t work to put money on the table – to “JUST DO IT” to get a job. He’ll do it automatically. That same motivation will drive him to persist through failures.

  4. Cyril at 4:27 pm

    My problem is my critical, sabotaging friend is also my husband. While he is good guy, he doesn’t EVER support me when I try to do something like set goals and go for it. In fact he gets mad about it, if, say one of my goals is to go back to school. He’s worried about the commute, the time, the gas, etc…etc. He’s got great reasons, but, if I followed his line of thinking I’d probably never get out of bed, much less try to train for a new career.
    I end up just ignoring him and doing “it” anyway, but it sure would be more comforting if he were on board.


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