Struggling with your goals is part of the process of us achieving what we want in life. They told us it wasn’t going to be easy and that it can be very demanding.
And the truth is that it is.
But over the years I’ve been working on myself by setting goals and struggling with goals, the more I’ve learned to work around them. I’ve discovered what sort of mindset we need to have, what sort of methods or techniques to try out, and more.
So if you are having problems with goals, I understand. But I’d like you to try this one thing:
Start yourself at the lowest bar possible but still make progress.
Here is why that strategy works.
You Need An Easy Mode At First
A lot of people are ambitious. Hell, I’m someone who is usually thinking, “Go, go, go” as well. But from my own experiences, I find if you want habits to really stick, you need to start with something smaller.
I’m going to call it going to easy mode. And I think it can be very effective.
And the reason it’s so effective is that when you set a goal that’s incredibly easy something shifts. No longer are you focusing on the depth of the goal, but rather building that habit.
It was the same reasoning I had for my maintenance system for my weight. It didn’t work, however, but with this new health app I have I’m already down to 208.5 as of this morning.
In other words, I’m bouncing back quickly when I recalled what I was eating and what I was doing. And soon enough I’ll be back down to where I was before.
But how am I getting down to that so quickly?
Well, the health app I have recommends some easy actions. Eat lots of foods that have water in it, and make sure you walk 2,000 steps every day. Not 10,000, just 2,000. With 300 step increments every day.
Because they’re not looking for me to shed 5 pounds per week or anything. They’re looking at me losing the typical amount (1-2 pounds). All the while building those habits and making them stick.
You Won’t Feel Overwhelmed
One of the big derailers for setting too many or too large of a goal is getting overwhelmed. A lot of you will be struggling with your goals if you follow this route.
Because while our brain can be on board for setting big and ambitious goals, we’re not always mentally prepared for it. And over time, our brain will start to make us feel overwhelmed and even doubt our ability. It’s the process of us slowly making an excuse to abandon whatever it is that we’re doing.
And it’s not that our brain doesn’t want us to succeed. It’s that our brain is highly resistant to change. And so if you set something really big that will shift your status quo, your brain isn’t going to like it.
Another way to look at this scenario is an analogy I used a while back. The idea of a goal and committing to a goal boils down to our ability to sell the goal to ourselves. To convince ourselves that this is a good idea. And from my year of experience selling stuff, I find it’s easier to pitch to people – and therefore convince yourself – when you are pitching a simple concept to people.
In other words, if you keep your goals simple or “easy” it’ll be easier to avoid feeling overwhelmed. Not only that but you can use it as a crutch when you begin to doubt yourself.
“I only need to walk 2,000 steps.”
“I only need to work on my business for one hour every day.”
Sure it’s not what you want to achieve, but a building needs a foundation. And that foundation takes time.
It Helps You Find Other Motivations
To expand on that point, I can imagine most would argue against easier goals. After all, they will take up less time in your day and may not pose as much of a challenge.
There is definitely truth behind that. Walking 2,000 steps might take someone 10-20 minutes. Compare that to walking 10,000 steps you’ll be spending a solid hour to walk that much.
But at the same time, I find that setting the bar purposely low is powerful. Mainly because it can allow us to find our own motivations. After all, we know it’ll be getting harder as we progress. We will find that challenge.
And we’re going to need that foundation at that point. But also, we need to learn how to reinforce it. To make it stronger and unshakable.
And I feel the best way to do that is to not focus on our performance so much at the beginning. Instead, we need to go in deep and figure out what tricks we can use to stay focused and motivated. Because when you’re struggling with your goals, it’s nothing to do with the goal itself. It’s to do with how you’re approaching it and perceiving it.
Our ability to achieve something boils down to the mindset that we have. So making it easy now allows us the ability to see what can motivate us.
And that’s more valuable than making a huge wave at the beginning.
Stop Struggling With Your Goals
Struggling with your goals is a mental battle and it all points back to your mindset. If you’re having issues, it’s likely something that’s going on in your head. Whatever it is, it’s hard to say as each
But I know that taking things easy and focusing more on the internal depth of ourselves will help us succeed. It’s building that foundation that will allow us to build our habits up and challenge ourselves to new heights.
To your growth!
Eric S Burdon