Goal Planning: Eliminating Obstacles

Now you’ve got a plan you’ll be starting to feel pretty confident about how easy it will be to achieve this lifelong dream or just get your house in order.

But let’s be honest – how many times have you tried going for this goal and not managed to get past the first hurdle?

Believe me, there is no judgement here. Last year, I set a goal to write a book. I wasn’t aiming to have the whole thing edited and published, just a first draft. By the time it got to the end of February I had already decided that I had been too ambitious. It just couldn’t be done with all the other things that were going on.

I was spreading myself too thin and it was exhausting. I had to either give up or change my plan.

Obstacles and the Solutions

Before we take our first step, we need to identify what our obstacles have been, are, or could be. Then we need to determine how to tackle them. Do we find a way to counteract them, accommodate them, or could they possibly be eliminated?

Perhaps you recognise some of these.

Time

We head into our plan with a major underestimation of the time we really need.

There’s a lot to be said for a little every day, but sometimes a lot on just one day is what is required and somehow we fail to factor that in around our other commitments.

The answer to this is to eliminate the time problem by getting rid of something that we don’t consider to be a priority, or factor in a different way of working – which may mean that it will take longer to get to the goal.

Other People

We may fail to achieve our goals because other people hinder us. That’s on us though.

Staying for another drink with friends and missing an early morning gym session, or binge watching your favourite TV series with your partner instead of tackling the research for your online course.

You want to enjoy these things with these people and should do but it doesn’t make you feel like you are getting anywhere and then you want to give up.

This is definitely an accommodate situation. Let them know how much it means to you and negotiate when and how you could get together.

Procrastination

We put it off and put it off some more. We look for a time for things to be just right, like when we’ve moved house or after the holiday.

We find other things to do and make excuses: Only I can cook tea / pick up the shopping / clean the house / wash the car. I’ve got to make sure everyone else is okay before I go out / read a book.

Then we think “well why bother?”.

Counteract this by committing to doing the smallest thing possible and no more than that. See where it takes you.

Eliminate it by trusting someone else to be able to take on some responsibility (even if you don’t think they can do it as well as you can).

Motivation

Lack of motivation is usually a sign of something else being wrong.

Our plan might be too big, or uninteresting or we didn’t align it with what really matters to us.

Eliminate this by reviewing the goal itself and seeing if it needs changing or breaking down into more manageable steps.

Distractions

Social media, emails, messaging, news alerts, even food can all cause progress to falter.

Eliminate these by changing your habits – something we’re going to be looking at later.


These are just a few of the obstacles we face. You might have others. How do you plan to tackle them?

TODAY’S ACTION

Identify all of the obstacles that you might face in your attempt to reach your goal and have a plan as to how you will be able to counteract, accommodate or eliminate them.

COME BACK TOMORROW FOR:

Tips for getting started – it’s the hardest part, after all.


What obstacles have you faced in the past that have hindered your progress? What will you be doing to counteract them, accommodate them or eliminate them?

Until next time, remember, if the excess baggage is weighing you down, you can always leave it in lost luggage.

Best wishes,


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