• Kevin S. Smith

The Five Unseen Barriers to Goal Achievement

As the new year approaches, many entrepreneurs and business leaders are starting to formulate in their minds the significant accomplishments they have planned for accomplishment. Like often happens, many of these plans will become statistics – laid to rest where most plans, goals and objectives go to die – the comfort zone!

Many of us take time and painstaking efforts to determine how we can overcome the tangible barriers to goal attainment - especially wen it comes to our business. Unfortunately, it is often the intangible barriers that cause the most problems! Yes, often when we don’t reach our goals or objectives – the problem lies not in the process of attaining the goal, but rather in the creative process of developing the goal.

In developing our Five-Point Mindset Primer for Entrepreneurs, I included five barriers to goals achievement that I have adapted based on work with one of my mentors, Paul Martinelli. I hope you get as much from it as I have. If you would like information on how to prepare for these barriers, please feel free to check the Five-Point Mindset Primer for Entrepreneurs.

Below are five of the unseen barriers that may prevent you from getting what you want in the upcoming year.

1.       Setting goals we already know we can achieve. In order to stick with our goals, the reward of achieving the goal must be greater than the price to be paid to achieve it. If you already know you can achieve the goal – it is likely the reward will not be great enough to keep you truly engaged. After all, if you know you can do it, and the reward is still extremely high – you would have already achieved it! In addition, when we set goals we know we can already achieve we sacrifice the potential failure that is often required to learn and grow!

 2. Setting goals that can only be achieved within a certain game-plan. Many of us like to have a plan. We engage in a ton of analysis and we map out years’ worth of activity. Well, if you want to hear God laugh – tell him your plan! Plans seldom work. Why? Because they are typically created given current circumstances and outlooks projected given our current understanding. Plans are important, but everything is in a constant state of change - always. And when that plan begins to falter (which it will), we tend give up on the goals. We often get so attached to the plan that was associated with the goal, instead of changing the plan – we change the goal – or we tell ourselves it just wasn’t in the cards!

3.      Disregarding a goal because we don’t know “how” to achieve it. Many of us tend to think that if we don’t know how we are going to do the thing – then we can’t do the thing. The truth is that it’s not until after you decide you want something that all the paths to get there begin to make themselves apparent. The reason we haven’t already seen the “how”, is because we had no need to consciously see it. We don’t see with our eyes, we see through them. In other words, our mind see only what it feels relevant. Once something becomes relevant, it becomes seen. Think about the last car you bought. After you bought it, you probably saw tons of them on the road! Well they didn’t just appear, they were there for a while; you just didn’t see them until they became relevant! The “how” is like the car – once you have bought into the “what” you will start seeing the “how” – and not until.

 4.       We second guess our worth. Too often we refrain from setting lofty goals because at some level, we feel we don’t deserve the success (or that level of success). We think we don’t deserve financial freedom, a better business or a stronger legacy. The truth is you don’t “get success”; you trade for it. You give up parts of your life that you can never get back for something of equal or greater value. So, when you say to yourself you don’t deserve success, you are really indicating you don’t feel that what you have sacrificed is of significant value – which of course is untrue. To sacrifice time, relationships, and personal freedoms to grow a business without demanding a return for yourself is irresponsible. You should not ask if you are worthy success, you should ask if the success you are asking for is worthy of your trade! If not, you should ask for even more – not less!

5.      We think it is about the “goal”. It is important to understand that we are setting out not to achieve the goal, but to become the person who is capable of achieving the goal. This is a common misperception that has been propagated throughout the business community. Goals are maps, placeholders or reminders; they are not the destination. Goals cause us to grow and become different. They are to bring things into your awareness that currently are not relevant. Goals are there to cause movement towards potential. It is crucial therefor during the onset of goal setting to consider not what you want to do, but who you want to be!

What you get from achieving your goal is not as important as what you become by achieving you goals. - Henry David Thoreau.

To truly understand how to avoid these unseen barriers, and increase your chances of achieving your goals in the upcoming year, please check out our FREE Five-Point Mindset Primer for Entrepreneurs!



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