Personal Leadership & Goal Setting

Setting goals and consistently not achieving them is definitely a bad habit and one you urgently need to reverse. Understanding the difference between goal setting and goal achieving will help you to quickly see the fruits of your labour.

Goal Setting is Over-rated

Goal setting can be an exciting and motivating task. Whether you’re setting a personal goal to complete a marathon or a professional goal to achieve a promotion, the process can be energising. I know it’s a cliché but the first week in January is an important week in the financial calendar of gymnasiums across the land. Think about it, that entire business model relies entirely upon two key things;

  • People’s ability to set goals
  • People’s inability to achieve goals

  • They bank on 90% of those enthusiastic goal setting members to fail, in other words not do what it takes to achieve the results they desire. If we were all as effective at achieving our goals, the world would be a competitive place and the gym industry would need larger premises and a new business model!

    So where do the 90 % go wrong?


    Your goals need to be compelling and connected to a dream or aspiration. If it’s not worth fighting for and your dream is a bit flaky then why get out of bed?


    Setting yourself up to fail is just another way of avoiding a commitment to action. If you’re goal is to become a professional deep-sea diver and you suffer from claustrophobia (fear of confined spaces) and hydrophobia (fear of water), then at least you can reflect upon your life reassured that you had a valid excuse not to pursue your dream – it just wasn’t realistic. Goals should be high enough so that when you jump and stretch you can just about touch them with the tips of your fingers (metaphorically speaking) – but you’ve got to be jumping.

    Action Orientated

    If your goal is to see the sun setting but you’re facing in an easterly direction, you’ll be standing there a long time before you achieve your goal. In fact you’ll be there forever, unless some helpful coach hands you a mirror or rotates your body 180 degrees! You can set whatever goals you like but if you’re behaviour is not directly connected to those goals then forget it.
    Goal achieving is at the heart of personal leadership and is the process of aligning realistic goals with a compelling vision and then taking action that moves you incrementally closer to that goal until you achieve it.

    A World of Goal Achievers

    Imagine what you’d create if you and everyone in your team were working together for a common compelling cause and all walking in a Westerly direction to see the sun setting.

    • Would you change anything about the goals you’ve set?
    • What would you be doing on a daily basis that’s different from your current daily habits?
    I see one downside to a world of goal achievers – I’d have to wait at least 20 minutes to get onto the running machine, now where did I put my membership card…..

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