2 Huge Problem With Setting Goals
If you know me, I might get a bit annoying when the year is approaching the end. I start talking about new year’s resolutions, setting new goals, going over last year’s goals, reflecting on the past, dreaming about the future…etc. I am just wired that way and I am somehow surrounded by people who are not. “What’s the point?” they say. “Why spend the time and effort creating something that you’ll forget all about in mid-February?” They are right. In fact, a record number of people Google “how to get out of gym membership contract” in February since they’ve only stepped foot in there only twice in January. January 1st and January 2nd. LOL.
If you are not a goal-setter, you’ll love what I am about to say. This quote came from Emmanuel Acho (Retired NFL linebacker, sports analyst, activist and author).
“Reaching a goal is a penalty you receive for setting one.”
What does that mean? He further explains, “People live life in a box that the world put them in. And my objective is to break outside that box.”
Nobody had ever run a mile in under four minutes. That was the box. The box says you cannot run a mile in under four minutes.
Scientists thought it was physically impossible. Some even suggested your heart would explode if you attempted to. Then Roger Bannister breaks outside of a box, runs a mile in under four minutes. But the sweetest part of the story for me, that is not told often enough, is that within the next two years, ten people ran a mile in under four minutes.
What that told me was that we had the physical ability to do it, we just did not have the mental ability to do it. And once we saw that one person do it, then all of a sudden it quickly became possible.
These boxes need to be broken, but there’s still no avoiding the two problems we’ll face in setting our goals:
- You don’t achieve it and you feel terrible.
- You do achieve it but you realize you aimed too low.
So, should we just get rid of our goals altogether?
No – according to Emmanuel, Don’t set goals, set objectives with no limitations. How is that different? Well, each goal has an end, it’s limiting, so Instead, set an objective with no limitations. Instead of trying to build a $5 million business, make it your objective to grow your business. Instead of trying to become a CEO, make it your objective to become a better leader. Instead of trying to run a marathon, make it your objective to become a better runner. Do you see his point, none of these goals/objectives has an end. You can become an amazing runner and run a 1/2 marathon, then compete in a full marathon, then an ultra, then an ironman…it goes on and on. No limitation.
I am still processing this idea. It’s so different from what I’ve been told and taught…and even implemented for most of my life. But one thing I am coming away with is the idea of thinking bigger, the idea of having no limits. It’s a compelling thought.
I would love to know what your thoughts are on this. Are you a goal-setter? Do you have an insight that’s been helpful to you in the past? Or, is this all just annoying? Hahaha! Have a great week. Shoot me an email, and let’s chat.