Achieving Goals: 4 Reasons You’re Not Crushing Yours
Achieving goals is what makes the world go round. As human beings, the most important thing for us to do is set a goal for ourselves, crush it, and move on to the next one. This gives our life direction and purpose. Goals prop us up in the dark times and keep us focused when everything is going good. We are literally hardwired to strive for goals each and every day but it seems like the monotony of the daily grind beats our passion and zeal out of us until we are just cogs in the wheel.
It doesn’t have to be like that. In fact, it should never be like that. When we have strong goals, a strong purpose, and even stronger focus then nothing will stop us from rising above the mediocrity that has become commonplace in our world. I want to outline five things that are stopping you from absolutely crushing it every single time.
You have no idea what you want
I always laugh when my little cousin tells me he wants to be a doctor, or an engineer, or an astronaut. It’s not because I think he can’t do it; on the contrary, I think he is very capable of achieving his dreams. The reason I laugh is because he is too young to know what he really wants.
For all I or anyone else knows, he is going to be the one to prove that sentient life is going to exist on another planet or he may cure cancer. Not that chemotherapy shit that kills just as much as the cancer cells themselves.
As an adult that has seen the world for what it is, what is your excuse for not knowing what you want? OK yes, you want to be rich but why do you want to be rich? Is being rich the end goal or is it just a means to an end. I always tell people that I do not do what I do to become rich, I do it so that I can spark the mind that changes the world. That is my Goal, to be one of the people that sparks the fire in the breast of the man or the woman that reaps a profound change in the world in which we live.
My goal is not to determine the form that change will take or to become chums with the person that makes that change. Who cares, we all only have one planet and anyone that makes that planet a better place to live is OK by me.
So when you are striving for your goals, I want you to understand that it is very important to know exactly what you want, the endgame. Otherwise, you are just throwing away your energy. How will you know you’ve gotten somewhere when you do not truly know where you are going?
You’re not achieving goals because of shiny object syndrome
This one is a natural course that most people have to grow out of before they do anything tangible with their lives. When you are first introduced into anything new, there is so much information to absorb and there are so many people telling you the “right” way to do it that it can be almost impossible to focus.
You jump from one new product or invention to the next and after a while, you lose all sense of why you even started the journey in the first place.
Focus is your best friend no matter what you are doing. I like to play ALOT. Hell, people have no idea how much and how hard I work because I am always playing around. The truth of the matter is that I am actually a workhorse, I can work for twenty hours in a day and get more work done in that time than many people get done in a week.
I am not superman but I do understand the power of not working on more than one thing at a time. I also believe in Parkinsons Law. This forces me to set extremely tight deadlines for myself and get the work done in the shortest amount of time possible.
Focus on one single thing, do not start and then switch three months later. To be successful in anything, you need to give it at least eighteen months of your life before throwing in the towel. Any less than that and you are doing yourself a disservice.
I really want to beat this topic over the head but I will spare you too much of my personal opinion on the matter. Just know that Focus, unmitigated obsessive focus is the only thing that will separate the men from the boys.
You are doing it for the wrong reasons
I don’t want to sound like a pastor preaching to the choir but you need to set goals for yourself for the right reason. If you want to do something just to shit on your rivals then you will most likely fail. You need to have a genuine reason for wanting to accomplish a really huge goal. I am not saying that you should want to eradicate world hunger just for the benefit of humanity, you should be able to make a healthy profit in the process while helping as many people as humanly possible.
Paradoxically, if you do not have a purely selfish reason for wanting to accomplish something then you will also most likely fail. Strange right? Do you think Bill Gates is Sinking billions into Africa and Asia just because he has an overwhelming sense of empathy for the people suffering. That may be part of the reason but in his heart, he has an utterly selfish reason for doing what he does. That is perfectly fine, he is fulfilling his own selfish desires while still benefiting millions of people. Who can knock him for that?
I am not Jesus Christ, I am a selfish human being just like you, just like your mother, just like your children, and just like every other human being on this planet.
When I was traveling through Kenya a few months ago, I stayed in a small village where they had almost nothing in the way of modern amenities. They opened their doors to me without question and allowed me to stay for a few days. In return, I attempted to pay for lodging and the rest but they refused to accept money, instead, they only accepted gifts from me. Trinkets really. It was not as if I emptied my pockets to please them, I gave them what I reasonably could without compromising my comfort in any way. Selfish? Maybe, but I am sure most of you would have done the same thing or something similar in my position.
Don’t be an ass and do not try and fool yourself. Admit to yourself the reasons why you are really doing something and determine if that reason will sustain you through all the hard parts of accomplishing your objectives.
Your Goals are not Smart
I will not really get into this because there are a lot of resources on the internet that devote entire websites to goal setting. You can check out this article here to get more information on the topic yourself.
Basically, your goals need to be:
Specific: Spell it out to the letter
Measurable: How can you measure a goal like “I want to be rich?” instead, try and do something like I want to make a million dollars.
Attainable: this would seem obvious to most of us but it is not. Saying you want to make a million dollars by next month when you are making forty thousand dollars a year now is far from realistic.
Results oriented: Well, this is more or less obvious. A goal should be based on results, not really on feelings or on things that are too subjective. That is why I do not make being happy an actual goal. To me, that one is a state of mind.
Time oriented: This is the most important one to me. You can accomplish almost anything if you are given enough time. That is why I am such a firm believer in Parkinson Law. It helps me growth hack in a way that I would never have imagined possible just a few years ago. Set a time frame for your goal and work o achieve it. That is the only true way to test your progress.
There is really no reason for you to not be crushing your goals every single time. If you have been struggling to do so and want to change that then just get a piece of paper and go through this short list. When you are going through it, think critically about each items and try to identify the places you may be falling short. After you go through it once go through it again until you have tweaked your goals and are supremely focused on achieving them. I’m looking forward to hearing about everyone’s story in the comments.