I've talked a lot about goal setting on my blog (did you know there's at least 5 types of different goals to set?). I believe it's one of the most important personal development activities to involve yourself in so you can live a creatively designed and purposeful life. If we're not continuously getting better, what are we really doing with our lives?
I recently realized there is one thing about goal setting that I haven't shared with you yet. There is one MAJOR thing to do before you commit to your next goal: figure out your WHY. Your WHY, as it relates to goal setting, is the core motivation behind the goals you set.
I'll share a couple of examples of what this looks like and then teach you how to figure out your WHY.
Let's start with my morning routine as an example. I shared a few weeks ago that I have spent almost all of this year experimenting with my morning routine. My goal was to "be a morning person" and "make themost of my mornings". On the surface, my WHY was all about being more productive, making the most of my day, etc. However, I just couldn't get traction with the goal. I'd start for a few weeks and then it would start to slide. It was like flinging one of those sticky things at a window and slowly watching it peel off. Nothing was sticking!
Nothing was sticking because I hadn't identified my root cause of WHY this was important to me. I was literally living the definition of insanity (doing the same thing over and over again expecting different results). I kept trying to change my habits but it wasn't until I read The Miracle Morning that I realized what really needed to change was my WHY. I adopted the WHY of "I want to be a morning person because I don't want to resist my life" and the rest is history. Actually, that is just one part of my WHY. I now have six WHY statements that I read through ever morning.
Here's another example. Let's say you set a goal to "workout more". You might experience the same thing as I did with my morning routine. You start out strong and then after a few weeks the excuses creep in: "I worked out really hard on Tuesday so I can take today off" or "I already had a doughnut this morning so I'm not going to bother working out tonight" or "I'm just really exhausted from work so tonight I'm going to treat my self via sitting my butt on the couch all night".
So, what's a likely reason that this goal is not sticking? Hint: the WHY is missing.
Usually, the surface WHY behind the classic "workout more" goals is usually an impossible strive for perfection or a crazy game of comparison. Motivating ourselves from a place of impossibility or comparison isn't enough of a core WHY to help us be successful in our goals.
The real WHY behind a goal like "workout more" are things like, feeling better, having more energy, feeling more confident and loving yourself that much more because you took the time to care for your body.
Here's how to get past the surface WHY and get right down to the real WHY:
Be a kindergartener. Be a super persistent and annoying kindergartener. It goes like this:
I want to work out more.
WHY do you want to work out more?
Because I want to have flat abs.
WHY do you want flat abs?
So I don't have to feel my jeans squeezing in on me.
WHY don't you want to feel your jeans squeezing in on you?
Because it reminds me that I'm not feeling super confident right now.
WHY do you want to feel super confident?
So that I can go about my day feeling good and not worrying about how I look!
Here's another example that I LOVE on what makes this process is important and how to complete it.
If you're struggling to figure out your real WHY, shoot me a note. I have so many tricks up my sleeve that are centered around getting to the heart of things. If even just ONE of your goals was that much more powerful due to your WHY, what could be possible? The possibilities are endless when we start from the WHY.