Somehow, you figured out a way to get some or most of these goals accomplished. And as you got older, your goals became more challenging like getting a job, going to college, starting a family, and so on.
So if most of us get the basic idea of goal setting, why are some people so quick to quit on goals they really want, like starting a business or becoming a movie star?
Well the only way I can answer this question is through a metaphor about climbing a mountain. So here goes:
Consider the top of the mountain as “the desired goal” and “the climb” is path to get there. The views at the top of the mountain are breathtaking and so is the climb.
Now let’s pretend that there are four types of people wanting to climb this mountain to get to their goals. Let me describe each of these people:
Person A gets discouraged at the bottom and doesn’t even attempt the climb. Internally they say, “That’s too much work. What’s the point? Why bother?”
There are many reasons why this person doesn’t move forward with their goals. It could be fear, lack of confidence, lack of passion… Really, the list could be endless.
If this person never changes their mind about climbing the mountain, they will always wonder what they missed out on. And it is likely that they will later regret not even attempting.
Person B attempts to climb the mountain and midway, they give up. Internally they say, “This is just too hard, I can’t continue. I am just not strong enough to keep going.”
While Person B demonstrates passion for the goal, they struggle with the grit or resilience needed to power through the tough parts of the climb. The path to any goal takes effort and sometimes is can be challenging. It is a mental and physical journey that requires a tough skin.
Now all hope is not lost with this person. They could change their mind and attempt to climb the mountain again with success. If they don’t attempt the climb again, they are also likely to regret their choice in the future.
Person C struggles to climb with a slow and steady pace. The climb is challenging at times, yet this person successfully makes it to the top. Internally they say, “I can do this. This is all part of the journey. The views at the top are worth the climb.”
This person has grit and pushed through even the toughest part of the climb. When they get to the top of the mountain, they experience the bliss of climbing to the top and then witnessing the views. And this feels amazing!
Person D manages to climb the mountain on somebody else’s back, avoiding the effort and sweat equity involved in the climb. Internally they say, “I don’t want to do the work, so I’ll take the shortcut.”
This clever person gets to the top of the mountain, yet doesn’t really appreciate the views at the top because they didn’t put the effort in to get there. They lack the gratitude of the climb. Therefore, they lack the true experience of bliss.
There are no shortcuts to experiencing the true happiness that comes from accomplishing a goal. The real happiness comes from the journey.
There is a basic formula to getting to your goals:
Your Goal + Passion + Grit + Courage + Support = Success
If any of these things are missing, it is likely that the goal won’t get accomplished.