I am a huge fan of goal setting!
About once a year I sit down to craft out my goals for the next year. Once a month I look at my goals and rewrite them to meet the changes in my life. Every Monday morning I spend a few minutes reading and tapping with my goals.
I have found that goal setting has been hugely beneficial in my life and I don’t say that in a “I feel better” way. There is tangible evidence that I am more productive, happier, and healthier because of setting goals.
But there is a dark side to goal setting.
Sometimes we set the wrong goal.
The Goal Setting Trap
When we set a goal we are not just stating what we want, we are also making a commitment to ourselves that we will work toward something very specific. Sometimes, as an accountability measure, we even share these goals with a loved one.
The problem comes when the goals that we have stated no longer serve us. We might have started working towards the goal and then realize it isn’t want we really want or something changes in our life and the old goal no longer fits our needs.
When this happens it can leave us feeling stuck and leads to inaction. On one hand we want to live up to our commitment, because that is what good mature people do, but on the other hand the goal no longer serves us so it’s a waste of time and energy to move toward it.
All Movement Stops
It is difficult to be caught in this place of inaction, particularly because we sometimes don’t have a perspective on what is going on. We simply feel like we are spinning our wheels.
There is an easy way to tap for this, even when we don’t know if this is the case. The tapping looks like this:
I have set a goal…When I set the goal I believed it was the best thing for me…I set the goal with a hope for a better future…And the hope of a better life…Today I am not sure if that goal serves me anymore…It might be the perfect goal for me…And it might have outlived its usefulness…I give myself permission to know that it is OK to let this goal go if it is no longer serving me…This is not a failing…This does not mean I have failed to live up to my word…This does not mean that I am quitter…It simply means that I have recognized the goal for what it is…It was something to help me to focus and move forward…I am a different person than I was when I set the goal…The work is a different place since I set the goal…If it is the right goal for me I give myself permission to recommit to it…If it is the wrong goal for me I give myself permission to find the right goal for me and my life.
Tapping on something as simple as that will create the space you need to move forward and free yourself from the trap of a goal that is no longer useful.
How To Set Effective Goals
If you are looking for help on how to set good and useful goals I would encourage you to check out the Ruach Center. There you will find a number of comprehensive tools to help you set good and useful goals that will not leave you feeling trapped in an unhelpful commitment.