Setting Goals? Avoid these Mistakes.

goals mistakes

Goals are very powerful. Most importantly, they provide us with a positive target to strive for.

At this time of year, ""goal setting always seems to be bandied about but we're not talking New Year's Resolutions here. We're talking real, tangible goals to accomplish to improve yourself and your life (and/or business).

It's not very likely that we'll accidentally accomplish something that makes life better, is it? That's because great accomplishments require intention. And intention is spelt out in effective goal setting.

Of all the things we learn in school, most of us were never taught how to set an effective goal. Subsequently we may have heard of the SMART goal setting acronym: smart goals setting infographic

S - Specific,

M - Measurable,

A - Achievable,

R - Relevant, and

T - Time-Bound

but why is it that some goals never get achieved?

We've identified NINE common mistakes that hinder goal achievement.

For best results, avoid these 9 goal-setting mistakes:

Setting too many goals

Too many goals can be overwhelming and spread your resources too thin.
Instead of having a multitude of goals, try setting one highly meaningful goal. When you have a history of success, increase the number of goals you're simultaneously pursuing.

Choosing Goals that aren't Highly Meaningful to You

The more you want something, the more likely you are to aggressively pursue it.

If you're going to limit yourself to a single goal, it's especially important to choose one that's highly desirable to you and will have a great impact on your life.

Expecting Plain-Sailing

A highly desirable and meaningful goal is unlikely to be reached quickly and easily. Expect a few bumps along the way.

Keep a positive attitude and simply assess the situation when things don't go the way you had hoped. Change your approach and try again.

Using this process to move closer and closer to your goal, regardless of the circumstances, how could you not be successful?

Not Recognizing Subconscious Signs

If you've set a desirable goal, it's only natural that you'd pursue it aggressively and enthusiastically. But if you find yourself procrastinating, losing your enthusiasm, or failing to take action for any reason, your subconscious is trying to tell you that something is amiss.

Take some to figure out what this is. Is this a goal you really want to pursue? Why?

Setting an Unreasonable Timeline

By not giving yourself enough time, you're risking the possibility that you'll feel discouraged when you don't complete your goal on time.

Things always seem to take longer than we expected. Try to be realistic and set a deadline that's reasonable and takes into account a few challenges along the way.

Failing to measure your progress

Imagine having a weight loss or financial goal but never weighing yourself or measuring your income. You'd never know where you stood relative to your goal. Review your progress on a regular basis.

Setting goals that aren't realistic

There are many goals that appear unrealistic, yet are realistic with an adequate deadline. However, there are also goals that are highly unlikely to be reached.

You can accomplish great things, but some things simply aren't an option, regardless of the timeline.

For example, if you're 55 years old and 5' 4", you're not going to play for the Newcastle Eagles, are you?

Setting Goals that Take too Long


Big goals are likely to require several smaller goals that ultimately lead to its completion.

It's much easier to stay focused on goals that are limited to around 3 months.

If you have a goal that will take longer than 90 days, determine where you would expect to be in three months and make that your goal.

Not Having a Clear Endpoint

An effective goal is measurable and therefore has a clear endpoint.

For example, "making more money" isn't an effective goal. A penny is more money. Would you be satisfied with that?

Be as concise as possible. Ensure you can measure your goal.

A goal is a gateway to a happier life. But setting effective goals takes practice, and it's important to avoid making these common goal-setting mistakes.

Avoid these mistakes and you greatly increase the odds of realizing success!

Get Help with your Goal Setting

Discover how our personal development sessions can help you