Setting goals is an important exercise to do, because it has the power to transform your life, and help you achieve your life long dreams and ambitions. Because of its power, there are a few subconscious traps that you can easily fall into when trying to set your goals. If you are aware of them in advance, you can more easily overcome them and re-focus on setting your goals correctly.
Here are 5 major pitfalls you need to look out for when setting goals:
Pitfall #1 : Procrastination
When you start setting goals properly, you will subconsciously realise that this exercise, will start to move you away from your comfort zone and from what you are already used to. You may want change in your life, but another part of you wants to stay the same. These are sub personalities that need to be told that change is a good thing and that it is safe to change. But these sub-personalities will cause you to procrastinate. So when you start setting goals, you may stop doing the exercise and procrastinate and go do something else. Or you may procrastinate from even allowing yourself to get started on your goal setting journey. You may give yourself excuses such as "I don´t feel like it", "I am too busy and don´t have time for this", "I will do it later or tomorrow" and never really get around to doing it.
When you catch yourself exhibiting any of these warning signs, I want you to stop yourself on your tracks and do the opposite: schedule time in your diary to set goals, and make this time sacred, and away from any distractions. When that time comes, even if you "don´t feel like it" or "feel bored", I want you to force yourself to sit down and go through your goal setting journey. Put on some nice relaxing music, and get to work. Literally, force yourself to do it.
Pitfall #2 : Fear
Change is uncomfortable, even if it´s for the better. When you are setting goals properly, using a proven system that actually works, it is very common for fear to show up. This can be fear of success or fear of failure.
Fear of success will cause you to downplay your goals, and ask for only what you think you can have or what you think you deserve. Fear of failure, will make you rush your goals, and not even put down what you truly and secretly wish and desire - because you don´t believe it is possible for you - not consciously, but subconsciously.
I want you to watch out for fear creeping in and sabotaging your success. You can also have fear of looking at and facing certain things. You may for example fear looking into your financial life and avoid setting proper goals for your finances. Become aware of fear. And do the opposite of fear - be bold and courageous, and have the balls to ask for what you really want and to also face that which you fear. Don´t let fear talk you into a life that is less than what you are capable of living. Go all the way, and ask for what you truly want, without fear.
Pitfall #3 : Worthiness
A lot of times we don´t ask for what we want and we don´t go for our dreams because we secretly don´t believe we are worthy of it. You can have a subconscious belief that for example tells you that you are not worthy of being a multimillionaire, or that you are not worthy of a healthy loving relationship, or that you are not worthy of happiness. Everyone has their story and these, again, are not on the surface. They are subconscious beliefs that hold you back from living a truly successful life on your terms. Whenever you catch yourself having a worthiness crisis, conscious or subconscious, I want you to apply a trick that was shared by India Arie. You stop and you ask yourself "What would I do if I knew I was 100% worthy of this?". And you apply this question for virtually any goal on your list.
Pitfall #4 : Laziness
Some people believe that life is only about action, and that includes taking action without a purpose and without a plan. I am here to tell you that you can take action in the wrong direction, and a direction that takes you far far away from your goals and purpose. So, you may feel lazy when it comes to setting goals, because you just want to get on with your life. However the most productive time you can spend, is actually setting goals because they hold the key to your success and to changing your life. Whenever your find yourself being lazy about setting your goals, remember that in that moment you are actually being lazy about creating the life of your dreams. Stop and take time to plan and to write down your goals. You life is worth more than a few lazy moments, push yourself out of your lazy state, and get to work.
Pitfall #5 : Avoiding certain areas of your life
We have all fallen on to this trap: focusing all our energies on one area of our lives and ignoring the rest. You can focus all your energy on work, and ignore your social life, your relationships and even your body. Next thing you have a fat bank account and a fat belly too! We falsely believe that if we just focus on one area of our lives we will be more successful and productive in that area. Yet, the funny part is that the more goals we set for all areas of our lives, the more productive we actually become. One area fuels the other. So, when setting goals, do not focus all your efforts on one area of your life and ignore the rest. Force yourself to write goals even for areas that are seemingly less important, and you will see that you will end up with a more balanced and well-rounded and fulfilling life.