Many people have issues with goal setting due to placing obstacles in their own way. Everyone has conscious or subconscious ideas that can become limiting beliefs, stopping us from achieving our goals if we let them. Sometimes these beliefs are instilled in us in childhood, and other times, we create them ourselves. Some of the most common barriers to goals setting involve fear and lack of belief in yourself enough to even set a goal, much less follow steps toward achieving them. Perhaps if you know some of the most common goal setting obstacles, you can work toward overcoming them.
An example of a limiting belief that can get in your way of success is how you see yourself with money.
If you believe you will always struggle and always be poor, chances are you’ll set yourself up for failure. A limiting belief that you’re poor and that you always will be poor becomes a self-fulfilling prophecy. The same can be said about anything negative in your life that limits you – whether it’s career, education, or personal, such as being healthy and of normal weight. If you see yourself a certain way, it can be hard to change that view and let go of that limiting belief.
1. “It’s useless”
The idea that nothing you do will make a difference is that you believe that any action you take won’t make a difference. “It doesn’t matter if I work out an hour a day, I won’t lose weight anyway.” How do you know? Have you tried to do anything for longer than a couple weeks?
2. You Don’t Want What You Think You Want
Some goals are set because other people want them for you. If you don’t really want what you say you want, it will be very difficult to set a goal for that thing. Be sure that you’ve set goals for the right reasons and that it’s something you really want. Write down the pros and cons of any goal and know why you want to achieve that result before setting it in stone.
3. “It’s hopeless”
Anytime you use the word “never,” it’s a clue that you’re focusing on a limiting belief. For example: “I’ll never have any money because you need money to make money.”
4. You Don’t Truly Understand the Importance of Goal Setting
Many people think goal setting is just hocus pocus and doesn’t really work. If you don’t really understand the power behind
5. “I’m helpless”
When most people feel uneducated or helpless, they blame their circumstances instead of working to change them. “I can’t manage my money because I don’t know how” sounds insightful, but the part that’s missing is the feeling of helplessness when all you need to do is take a personal finance course or buy, read and practice the lessons in “Personal Finances for Dummies.”
6. You’re Not Really Sure How to Set a Reasonable Goal
If you’ve actually tried to set a goal before but didn’t experience results, it’s probably because you just don’t know how to set a goal. It’s not as easy as just writing down a dream. Goals aren’t dreams. They are realistic, specific, achievable end results that you want to see. Take the time to learn the best goal setting techniques in order to experience goal setting success.
7. “It’s the universe”
Sometimes a limiting belief has to do with the idea that outside forces that you can’t control are at work keeping you down. You can’t find a job or get clients because the economy sucks, where you live is depressed, you don’t have the right clothing and so forth, but you do nothing in your power to change it because it’s destiny. “Everything happens for a reason”-type of thinking can be very limiting and make you feel powerless.
8. You’re Scared of Failure
Many people do not bother setting goals because they have a self-limiting belief that they’ll fail anyway. Therefore, if they do not set a goal, they won’t have to be a failure. But remember that the idea of planning to succeed over planning to fail is realistic. No goal setting is a recipe for failure; goal setting is a recipe for success. When you accept that you can only achieve real success through goal setting, you’ll overcome this obstacle.
9. “I’m worthless”
The way you see yourself is important because if you think of yourself as someone who doesn’t follow through, who doesn’t succeed and who can’t change their life, you’ll avoid goal setting like the plague. You’re the only person on Earth who can control your actions, so you’re the only one who can set the goals for you, and the only one who can make yourself feel worthwhile. The idea that you’re not smart enough or good enough to do what you really want can be a very strong limiting belief system. You feel you’re not pretty enough, smart enough, or good enough to have something, so you don’t take the steps to achieve it, because you don’t feel that you deserve it.
10. You’re Afraid of Judgment
Sometimes people are scared to set a goal for something because they see it as outrageous. For instance, let’s say that you want to go back to college to get a Master’s degree, or you want to start your own business. You fear that if you set that goal, and other people know about the goal they’ll judge you harshly for wanting it or for some other imagined issue. If you are worried about what others think of you, it’s time to dig deep inside yourself and get over it. The truth is, what you think of yourself is more important than anything else. When you stop judging yourself, you’ll stop worrying about the judgment of others.
11. “It’s genetic”
While there are certainly some instances where genetics play a huge role in a person’s life, the truth is that almost everything that is genetic can be fixed with the right mindset, training, exercise, and outlook. You’re not stuck with your genetics, but if you think you are, you may not try any of the things to pull yourself out of the rut you’re stuck in.
12. You’re Afraid of Success
Believe it or not, some people are literally afraid of success. They feel too much pressure surrounding success to actually make goals to be successful. They are more comfortable in their role as someone who is not successful or who is “normal” instead of as someone who sets a goal, works toward achieving it, and is seen as a success. The truth is, there will always be people who want to tear you down once you achieve some success, but the saddest thing in life is regretting not doing something. Most people regret the things they did not do much more than the things they did do – right or wrong.
13. “I’ll fail”
The truth is the fear of failure is something most people have as a limiting belief. “I’m a bad public speaker so if I do it, I’ll be judged, and I’ll fail anyway so why try” is a common refrain. But, how can you set that belief in stone if you haven’t tried?
14. You Don’t Really Believe It’s Possible
People avoid goal setting because they simply do not see the vision of what can be. They don’t believe. They don’t picture themselves fully at the point of success, experiencing success. Since they think it can’t happen, they don’t try. But, the truth is, you can’t know for sure about anything unless you follow the steps necessary to reach a goal. You can dream big, and reach for the stars. Trying is more important in most circles than actually making it. And, chances are that if you really try, you will make it after all.
15. “I’m different”
The belief about being different isn’t always necessarily bad, but it can be very limiting. You don’t want to be who you are because you’re different and you’ll be looked at as different by other people. You’re afraid to be who you are, and because of that, you don’t even know who you are, and you’re too scared to find out due to fear of rejection and ending up alone. Chances are though, that there are many people out there just like you.
Goal setting is imperative if you want to truly see all your dreams and visions come to fruition. It doesn’t matter if it’s business oriented or personal – setting a realistic and achievable goal and then working toward realizing that goal on a daily basis does work. You just have to do the work.
If you ever notice any of these thoughts or phrases go through your head, try to disconnect from them, and turn them around to “why not me?” instead of “why me?” Always ask “why not me?” because the truth is, you’re not feeling anything different from anyone else who has made goals and achieved them. The difference is in the doing, not the intelligence or talent.