Why don’t we reach our goals? In my experience, the number one reason is that we don’t Take Action. We have a burning desire to lose weight, feel better, build a business, etc. but never put the rubber to the road. Why is that? Why do we seem to set ourselves up for failure? I’ve found there are typically 4 big hurdles in our way.
These are the Top 4 Reasons We Don’t Take Action
We construct our lives to be comfortable. We purposefully don’t want to experience discomfort and spend a lot of time, money, and energy on the comfortable things in life. However, when we are trying to grow, change, or reach for a goal, comfort is the enemy. We can’t remain comfortable and achieve something new – something outside our comfort zone! So, “pain” is an essential component to growth and striving for a new goal. Pain is a powerful motivator to start. “I’m sick of being this lazy.” “I can’t stand my job/salary.” “I’m tired of being out of shape.” These are pain-induced motivators.
After the initial pain motivator however, is a more powerful motivator. Progress. Progress is the ultimate motivator. When you are seeing results – even small results – the motivation to keep going is strong! Progress is the powerful, long term motivator. When you can see that the actions you’re making are moving you in the right direction you will keep taking action.
So if you have a goal and need to take action, you need some sort of pain. Put yourself in an uncomfortable situation. Do something that scares you. The hardest part is taking the first steps! That progress will propel you forward!
Seems obvious, right? If you don’t know by now, your phone is a distraction. (You’re probably reading this on your phone right now, distracted from something else you could be doing.) Not only is our phone a distraction, almost everything else distracts us from the top priorities in our lives. Binge watching a season. Doing “busy” work. Too many work commitments. The list is never ending. At some point, we’ve decided that trying to do as much as possible and consume as much as possible is healthy, and socially acceptable. To really achieve goals of any significance, we must slow down. Stop consuming so much. Quit saying “Yes” to everything and start saying “NO.” Replace the quantity of what you’re doing with quality tasks.
The key to removing all this noise from your life is having a plan. Every day, every week, must have a plan. If you’re free-styling it day by day, you are setting yourself up for failure. There isn’t a single successful person that wakes up and just “wings it”. You must have a plan for each day and each week. It just has to be done!
We’re all guilty here too. With so many priorities and many of them conflicting, we come up with excuses why we have to put one priority in front of the other. Do you need examples? Ok. “I travel for work, so I don’t have time to work out.” “I’m a parent, and eating healthy is hard.” “My schedule is too busy to work on personal growth.” “I work at McDonald’s so I can’t eat healthy.” Alright, I’ll stop there. Excuses are everywhere at all times! And sadly, these excuses beat us up. We feel so conflicted and torn internally that we are wore out; defeated.
How do we get out of that rut and break the madness? Accountability. Someone that we trust to hold us accountable. A mentor, coach, co-worker, etc. Close family members can be helpful as well, but not always. Choosing the right people to hold you accountable is needed to make the whole thing work. If you go out and party with your best friends, they probably shouldn’t be your accountability partner to going to the gym. Make sense? Find the right people and hold each other accountable!
4) Confusion and Uncertainty
These two will lead to not taking action also. If you have so many ideas and distractions in your head that you can’t formulate a plan, you need to get the ideas out on paper and sort it out. Being confused like this is just stirring the pot of soup and never pouring it out to eat. You’ve got to get those ideas out of your head to make them meaningful!
Similarly, if you have uncertainty or questions swirling in your brain, you’ll never take the action you need to succeed. Doing some research and finding successful people to emulate can be very helpful. Find people who have achieved the things you want to achieve, and copy them. I’m not talking about “internet people” and articles written by famous people. Find actual humans that you can meet with and find out what they’ve done to make them successful. Want to be a good parent? Find some good parents. Want to lose weight? Go to the gym and find someone who’s done it. Want to build a business? Find someone in the industry and introduce yourself.
If you feel stuck and have been unable to take action on your goals, these suggestions might feel overwhelming. Where do I start? How can I get it all done? How can I make so many changes? It’s true, there is a lot that needs to be done. If you need help with the first step, do this first: Write down all your ideas. Then reach out for help. That’s it, take those 2 steps and you will be on your way!