How the Way You Set Goals May be Part of the Problem

shoes-in-water-whatever-it-takes-300x200 How the Way You Set Goals May be Part of the Problem


A lot of people don’t realise that when they set goals for themselves to reach, the goal itself can reflect a negative approach to the task.

For example the goal ‘I don’t want to be fat’ is a negative approach to the situation. Why does this matter? Well, it doesn’t give you much of an incentive to change your habits. And your bad habits are very powerful, otherwise you would have reached this goal already. But that’s not your fault, it’s just your faulty psychological programming at work putting yourself down. And it is at work night and day whether you are aware of it or not. Not wanting something wont shift this programming, and it is not enough of a motivator for lasting change.

Take another example, ‘I don’t want to be alone.’ Again this is a negative approach to change, and it doesn’t really motivate you well. It motivates you out of fear rather than inspiration. A lot of what we all do tends to be motivated by fear. That’s not ideal, and if you can find a way of being motivated by inspiration rather than fear, this becomes a far more powerful force for changing habits. Make the goal something about wanting to be your best self, and that you believe you can. Also, reinforce how important this is to every area of your life, and that this will lead to satisfying relationships. In other words, you need several positive things that will motivate you, that covers you, others, maybe even the wider society.

Think of the goal as working from the inside out – from your mind out to the world, not the other way around. In the above example, when you have a better relationship with yourself, you are rarely lonely and you send much better energy to others, creating better possibilities to connect with others.

In summary, when you set goals try to make them inspiring and big enough that they will affect you and others in positive ways. And as long as you have a strong ‘I can’ inner voice to back yourself, and a focus on doing whatever it takes to get there, then you create meaning every day this goal is conscious for you.


If you would like to know more about having a better relationship with yourself and others, take a look at my new book Closer, available in bookstores now and on Booktopia at

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