Why Goal Setting is Broken and How to Fix It

How to Set Meaningful GoalsI’m willing totake a bold stand to say that the traditional way most people set goals is broken.  It sounds good in theory and on paper, but in the light of daily activity, it doesn’t hold up. “Smart” goals are just plain dumb and shortsighted.

Why is this?

I have found 3 primary reasons traditional goal setting is broken. There is:

  1. No link to your “deeper why”
  2. Limited focus on results alone
  3. Lack of integration between daily choices and desired outcomes

Think about it, are you really set up to make it the best year of your life personally and professionally?  Or, will it be more of the same-old, same-old?

Do your goals look like a rubber stamp of the previous year’s goals that were not met plus a few vague ideas like “earn more money” or “get more clients”?

How likely are these to inspire you beyond the next few weeks?  (Not very.)

What is the probability of you achieving them? (Happenstance to slim.)

Here’s how to fix that.


Root Everything in a  “Deeper Why”

This is about your purpose and reason for being.  Most people get so busy managing the demands of running a business day by day that the reasons why you are doing this in the first place get lost.

Who do you want to be as a human being?

What do you yearn for from your one precious life?

Are you living today to serve this bigger purpose?  Or are the things that matter most to you being lost in the dust cloud of daily doing?

Take some time within the next week to reflect and renew your commitment to your deeper why before you set forth your goals and plans for the New Year.

Focus on How You Want to Feel

Traditional goal setting talks only about external results:

  • Earn $X income
  • Serve a certain number of clients
  • Build a list of a certain number of prospects

External results are important, absolutely.  However, if you don’t take a step back you are likely to find yourself working full out toward goals that require all of your time and effort only to find upon achieving them that the glory is pretty hollow.  Have you ever done what it takes to achieve a goal only to find yourself filled with regret about everything you sacrificed and missed along the way and thinking to yourself, “Was it really worth it?”

When you focus on your inner intentions regarding how you want to feel and the quality of the experience you want to have along the way you guarantee your success.

[clickToTweet tweet=”When you focus on how you want to feel & the quality of the experience you guarantee your success.” quote=”When you focus on how you want to feel & the quality of the experience you guarantee your success.”]

Here’s why.

If you focus only on the external goal, suffering and toiling along the way, and you don’t reach it, you’re miserable. Even if you do reach the goal, you often experience a hollow feeling even if you’re happy and proud about your achievement.

Conversely, when you focus on the experience and how you want to feel, you are guaranteed success. If you don’t quite reach the external goal, you’ve still had the experience you desired.  If you do reach the goal you have the external rewards and the internal rewards.  Win-Win

Ask yourself – how do you want to feel this year? What do you want the quality of your experiences to be like?

Use these to guide what external goals you set and how you pursue them.

Daily Choices = Future Outcomes

There is no such thing as instant achievement. There is a journey, a process from where you are to where you want to be. At the macro level, it is that simple.

How you choose to spend your time is how you spend your life.  Your achievements, happiness, and joy are determined by what you choose to do and how you choose to do it.  If you use how you want to feel and who you want to be coupled with your deeper why to guide all your choices each day you will create the future outcomes you desire.  You will enjoy your days more, serve your clients better, have more fun, create more opportunities, and see better results.

I’m not suggesting everything will be rainbows and unicorns.  That’s an animated fantasy. Of course there will be detours, disappointments, changes, and challenges along the way. That is the nature of life and business.

What I know for sure is that when you choose a three-dimensional approach for setting your personal and business goals you get to start having your best year ever right now rather than hoping that it comes someday.

Get Your Year in Gear!  If you’re ready to create the sustainable success you yearn for in your business while having lots of time for a life you love, now is the time to get the support and tools you need to succeed. Contact me today for a complimentary discovery session and explore how working together will propel you forward. Set up a time to talk here: https://www.timetrade.com/book/Z9XWN


photo credit: Mathieu Bertrand Struck via photopin cc

Scroll to Top