7 Reasons Why You Have Trouble Sticking To Your Goals
Are you having trouble sticking to your goals and New Year Resolution's that you set for yourself last month?
Every year, we set goals and New Year Resolution's and goals for ourselves, shouting #newyearnewme, which is great!
But the question is: Is it still happening?
Are you still working on your goals, or is it more of a "Well, it was nice while it lasted" kind of thing?
So why can't you stick to your goals? What's stopping you from making it happen?
7 Reasons Why You Have Trouble Sticking To Your Goals
1. Too many goals.
Having too many goals can lead to a lot of things like exhaustion, lack of focus, and not wanting to do it anymore.
I get it. It feels exciting - a new year full of so much possibility and potential, right? I mean, how does anyone ever stick to just one thing? (And if you haven't noticed, I struggle with this a lot. Just check out my archives...)
But if your strategy is to do "all the things", you will find yourself doing none of it.
Because it's too much. We're not robots.
There are things called emotions, bad days, and moments of self-doubt. You've probably had a few of those before...
Focus on one thing. One goal a month, because it takes that amount of time (or longer) to form a goal anyway.
Trust me, it's better to have 12 good habits, than 200 habits you tried to start but never got the hang of when the end of the year comes around.
2. Lack of patience
You set a goal for yourself and you expect yourself to become a master at it within a week. Sound familiar?
But it takes time.
Let's put things into perspective.
You have a bad habit you want to change, but you've had this bad habit for years and years. Maybe even a decade or so.
...and you expect yourself to completely cut it out of your life cold turkey in 2 weeks just like that.
The problem isn't falling off the wagon or not being perfect at it. It's that you need to give yourself more time to get better at it.
A few months. A year. Maybe even longer than that.
But if you're always giving up on yourself and your goals year after year, it's going to be even worse because every time you give up, you're going to think that it's not impossible.
It is. You just need to keep going.
3. Lack of belief
You set a goal and you're really excited, but deep down, you don't believe in yourself.
It either feels like too much of a lofty goal or you've tried it in the past and it hasn't worked out.
Well, what if you could accomplish it? Because you can.
But first, you have to believe in yourself - which means showing up and doing the work.
And some days, it's going to be really hard. And some days, you're not going to feel like getting out of bed to go for that morning run.
But if you believe in yourself and you believe that you can, you will find a way to get yourself out of bed every morning. Because failure is not an opportunity you allow yourself to see.
Believe in yourself, show up, and do the work. Rinse and repeat.
4. Lack of planning
Fun fact: I did not know how much planning and organization was involved in making things happen. Especially if you want to make multiple things happen at a time.
(But if you have a history of not following through on any of your goals, focus on one goal like we talked about in #1 and plan to succeed with one goal.)
So now that you have your goal in mind, think about how you can break that down.
Say you want to start running in 2018.
When are you going to go running? Where are you going to go running? How are you going to go running? And why are you even running in the first place?
Essentially, I go over the 4 W's and 1 H with myself.
Because the better you plan, the more you know. And the more you know, the better you can do.
Make a plan. Don't just say "you'll do something".
It's easier to fall short on something when you don't have any concrete steps in place.
5. Lack of consistency
One of the most crucial things to do when you set a new goal for yourself is to do it consistently.
Because otherwise, it's easy to get "airy fairy" with it. And suddenly, it's been 4 weeks since you last worked on them, or even thought about them.
When you do something every day, it's an active thought that you can't really put on the back burner.
For example, when you exercise regularly and consistently, it actually feels weird not to exercise. You can feel the absence of it.
But when you're not consistent, it just feels normal to not to do, so you don't.
If you say you're going to do something (even if the only person you told was yourself), then do it. Stop coming up with excuses. Stop allowing yourself to come up with excuses.
Do it every day until it becomes a habit, and then keep doing it because hopefully your goals are something you want to keep for a lifetime. ;)
6. Lack of personal accountability
A very valuable lesson I learned in 2017: personal accountability.
Keeping yourself accountable and not depending on other people to keep you accountable.
Because at the end of the day, only you can decided whether you want to do something or not.
The truth is that all the tools and resources that you need are already up there.
But it's up to you to show up, to use them, and to follow through on your word.
Because unless you're paying someone, it's not their job to keep you accountable.
Self-discipline, and ask yourself why it's important to you. Realizing that at the end of the day, you are the only dealing with the consequences of your actions.
Clarity + intention + purpose = personal accountability.
You want everything to be perfect.
And I get it, because I use to be this kind of person.
While it was unintentional, I think 2017 was really about letting go of my perfectionism. (And I don't want to sugarcoat it, it was really hard. Maybe even one of the hardest things I've ever done.)
I'm the kind of person who will make a spreadsheet and color code everything.
...and in November 2017, I went to Europe without an itinerary, which is about as stressful as it gets for any perfectionist with a Type A personality.
Realize that perfection does not exist. Allow yourself to be imperfect.
In fact, purposefully do things imperfectly. It may or may not drive you absolutely insane at first, but over time, you'll find peace and calmness in your imperfect actions.
Goal setting is hard.
It takes time, patience, planning, consistency, personal accountability, empathy, and a whole lotta trial and error to get better.
But it can be done.
Always remember that. Anything you want to do can be done, so keep working at it.
Recently, I started watching this show called The Amazing Race, which got me thinking about how we approach life. Everyone on that race has probably done at least one thing that they never thought they would do, but they did it anything.
There are many reasons why people don't accomplish their goals and have trouble sticking to them, but the most important (and common) reason is because they get in their own way.
So get out of your own way. Whatever goal you may have in mind, you can do it.
I'd love to hear from you.
Why do you have trouble sticking with your goals?