4 Reasons We Fail to Achieve Our Goals (And How to Overcome Them)

Person Standing On Top of Boulder Achieving Goal

Why is it so difficult to carry out goals we want to achieve, including those we create action items on, but eventually still leave unresolved? You’ve probably experienced this several times. It’s easy to say, “I want to…” but it’s harder to actually follow through and say, “I have…”

Here are four reasons why you might be failing to achieve your goals.

1. Procrastination

Knowing you have an upcoming deadline, an impending project, a looming responsibility does not make it any easier to tackle. A recent study proves that the best way to beat procrastination is to actually start.

It doesn’t matter how you initiate said goal, it just matters that you overcome this initial mental block and begin. Once you start, your brain will be more prone to actually want to finish and see your goal through.

2. Psychology of Fear

When you are unsure about what you can expect in a certain situation, your brain immediately tends to be on alert. This is also known as the “fear of the unknown.” Feeling anxious or nervous about not exactly knowing what you’re about to experience is normal.

“People climb mountains and expose themselves voluntarily to all kinds of risks, but they don’t like risk inflicted upon them that they don’t understand or have control over.” The next time you start a big project change your perspective and become the “director” or “driver” of your assignment. This can help alleviate the stress and apprehension that comes with uncertainty.

3. Unclear Goals

A good goal is one that is effective and clear in its intent and purpose. In a 2010 study, participants were asked to either write out ‘why’ or ‘how’ they would achieve their goals. Those that began the study with ‘low goal-relevant skills’ were more likely to attain their goals if they wrote out how.

A clear goal is effective at internally pushing you to continue and finish (whether you consciously realize it or not). Before you start a goal, sit down and be honest with yourself; list out your end goal and a simplified outline of how you will get there.

4. Multitasking

Right now, how many tabs do you have open on your computer? Do you generally switch back and forth between two or three projects at a time? There’s a popular perception that multitasking is an efficient means of working; by juggling more than one thing at a time you are maximizing your time and ability to complete all your tasks.

“Even when people feel they are multitasking, they process only a single task at a time. Therefore, multitasking is often merely a matter of subjective perception.” Instead, of multitasking and leaving projects halfway done, break down each of your duties and work your way through.

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