5 Obvious Goal Setting Mistakes You Must Avoid


January 25, 2013   •   Fact checked by Dumb Little Man

Goal setting can get overwhelming.

To get the maximum results and to actually achieve your goals, you have to know what you’re doing.

If you miss something important, or make an obvious mistake, it could mean significantly delaying your progress.

That’s why I’ve written this article, where you’ll discover 5 obvious goal setting mistakes you must avoid.

That is, if you want to achieve your goals.

This isn’t rocket science. It isn’t hard. It comes down to making progress.

Let’s dive into the mistakes.

1. Not determining persuasive reasons for setting and reaching goals.“Why am I doing this?”

You need to define a clear and convincing answer for this before you even start listing down your goals.

Your answer will be your anchor to help you stay put and stay on the right track, especially when things get rough.

It will serve as your number one motivational factor. Look back on it often so you will be reminded why you’ve set a goal in the first place. If you fail to do so, you might lose the appetite to continue or even start on your goals.

2. Not realizing the benefits that come from reaching your goals.

You already know that you have a great reward waiting for you once you’ve reached your goal(s).

For example, you are aware that you can be healthier once you have obtained your aim of losing 10 pounds for each month of year 2013.

But, think of other benefits that may come along with your “main” reward; things like, self-confidence, a great body, attractiveness, become an inspiration to other people, improved self-control, rejuvenated spirit, great eating habits, and so forth. List all good things that may happen to you or you can get from reaching each goal.

List as many as you can. 

The mere looking at that list can give you enough motivation to start and continue working on your goals. Review your list often so you will have a continuous push towards the end of your journey.

3. Not realizing the consequences of not reaching your goals.

Realizing and writing down all the benefits of achieving a goal is as vital as realizing the bad things that may happen if you fail or refuse to set goals.

This list, though it contains negative things that might happen, it can motivate you. For example, for your weight loss goal for 2013 you list down: hating yourself, disappointing your family, losing the confidence of friends, suffering a fatal disease, or dying young.

Make it as scary and as undesirable as possible, but factual.

Once you’ve realized that those are the consequences of not being successful in that particular goal, the scary feeling you may feel at first can turn into a strong desire to work on losing that 10 pounds every single month simply because you do not want those things to happen to you.

Also, include things you will miss if you do not set goals or fail to reach them. This list however, can have a negative impact on you. It can make you upset or depressed if you’re not careful.

Study how negative things can create positive impact, because they do. This is like the principle behind converting stumbling blocks into stepping stones.

4. Not evaluating your level of readiness. 

Being ready is the first step to success.

You cannot win any competition, pass any exam, become rich, have a happy marriage, have a fit and healthy body, or reach any goal, if you are not prepared. In setting any goal, you need to determine how prepared you are physically, mentally, socially, emotionally, or financially.

Being emotionally prepared is the most important because even if you lack money, you lack support from family and friends, or you are physically ill, if your emotions and spirit are strong, and indestructible, you can surpass anything and do anything.

Be ready to be criticized, discouraged, mocked, or laughed at. Because when you are emotionally weak, your motivation may melt, your heart can be broken, and your spirit can shatter, which will make it impossible for you to be successful.

Also, you need to evaluate your strengths and weaknesses, your knowledge and skills, even the help and assistance available for you. Sort and list them all down.

This way you can have an idea of how prepared you are before “going to a war.”  Yes, working on your goals can be like a war and you cannot triumph over it unless you are prepared.

5. Not learning from both yours and other people’s mistakes and failures.

One smart way to avoid obstacles is by studying your route; things like puddles, stones, sharp or blind curves, debris, or rough and bumpy parts of the road.

The same principle applies in goal setting. Review your past failures and make sure you improve and do not repeat the things you did poorly. This is a great way of looking at and dealing with failure.

Instead of losing hope and quitting because you fail, convert that unpleasant experience and feeling into something productive and motivational.

Also, learn from other people’s mistakes or failures in setting goals. It’s wiser to know and avoid possible challenges because you heard and learned them from other people rather than messing up first and learning from it.

Written on 1/25/2013 by Lesley Knowles. Lesley is a young life coach. Her happy and positive disposition was one of the reasons Dynamic Productivity was born. She is a young woman who sees hope, beauty, and fun in all things, and perceives life to be a wonderful thing however hard and challenging it may be. She believes that anyone, even the worst can improve and change for the better. Visit her website, Dynamic Productivity and learn how to see life in a different and beautiful way, http://www.dynamicproductivityhq.com/. Photo Credit:

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