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9 Reasons Why You're Not Achieving Your Goals and How To Overcome Them

GoalsAlicia Grace6 Comments

You set goals, but for some reason, you fail to accomplish them each time. I know how frustrating this can be. In this post, I’ll share with you the exact reasons why, and actionable steps you can take to combat them.

Learn the 9 reasons why your goals fail, and the actionable steps you can take to overcome them.

Problem #1: You don’t have a specific goal

‘Become my own boss’ or even ‘lose 10 lbs’ are not specific goals. The trouble with such a broad goal is that it’s hard to see it as something real. It becomes an ideal, not a goal per se.


Your goals have to be SMART, ie. Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Relevant, and Time-Bound. Your goal to become your own boss should look something like this:

‘Build a business bringing in £5,000 in income each month within the next two years’.

This goal may not look pretty, but you can see the goal suddenly becoming more real. It’s Specific, Measurable (£5,000), Achievable, Relevant (the life goal being to be your own boss), and Time-Bound (two years).

You can (and should!) also break this down into smaller goals: ‘Brainstorm and come up with 5 business ideas this week’; ‘set up Instagram account, make first 5 posts, and get 100 followers in 2 weeks’.

Problem #2: You aren’t motivated enough

Motivation is a funny thing. Chances are you started your goal with a great deal of motivation, but somewhere along the way, the motivation faded away, as did your goal.


Research shows that what successful people have in common is grit. If you want to achieve your goals, you have to stay motivated. This doesn’t come automatically: you have to work at it.

So, how do you keep your motivation high?

Constantly remind yourself of your goal. Write it down where you can see it daily. Lastly, don’t be too hard on yourself. We all face setbacks at times, and one roadblock is no reason to give up on your goal. Remember to get up and keep going.

Problem #3: You don’t know where you are

Imagine wanting to save £1,000 but never knowing how much you have already saved. At some stage, you’re probably going to forget about your goal simply because you can’t see your progress.


Find a way to keep track of your progress. Remember the SMART method? This is the Measurable part. If you’re trying to gain 10,000 Instagram followers, for example, break that down into smaller 1,000 chunks, and write down how many followers you have each day or each week. This will also help you notice trends so that, for example, you know which days you’re most effective.

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Problem #4: You waste free time

This is one of the biggest mistakes people make. Proper time to relax is a good thing, but don’t mistake important relaxation time for extra time you can put towards your goals. Each minute is an opportunity to work towards your goal, and doing this means that you are missing out.


Unless your goal is ‘go on a walk at 6am on Tuesday mornings’, you don’t have to keep it to any specific time. Definitely set aside time to specifically work on your goals, but if more opportunities come up during the week, seize them. Dinner cancelled? Maybe you can hit the gym, or brainstorm on new products.

Problem #5: You don’t write your goals down

Failing to write down your goals means that you have just missed out on one of the best and easiest ways to hold yourself accountable to your goals. I can’t say enough how important this is.


WRITE IT DOWN. It has to be somewhere you see often, preferably daily.


Problem #6: You aren’t committed to your goals

This one’s a biggie guys. Remember what we said about motivation earlier? Well, commitment is even more important. It’s what keeps you going on days when you’re running low on motivation, because you’ve committed yourself to it. When you aren’t committed, it’s easy to let your goals slip.


Take responsibilities of your goals. If you have failed in the past, own up to them, and think about what went wrong, and how you can overcome those same obstacles if they come up again.

Problem #7: You try to achieve too many goals

It’s good to have goals, but too many of them means that your focus is spread out too much, and you end up struggling to achieve a single one.


Take stock of what’s on your plate already before you take on more. Try to focus on one big goal at a time.

Problem #8: You hang out with the wrong people

According to Tim Ferris, you are the sum of the five people you spend most time with. Choosing who you surround with is crucial to achieving your goals. If the people you hang out with discourage you from your dreams, or if they themselves don’t do anything about their own goals, you won’t be motivated to achieve your own either.


Spend less time with negative people, and don’t let them get in your head.

Problem #9: You burn yourself out

The trouble with New Year’s Resolutions is that you tend to put all your effort into those first few days and weeks, then get burned out.


Pace yourself. It’s just like training to run a marathon: you start out taking short runs, and stretch yourself slowly until eventually you hit that 10km.

There you have it,

the 8 reasons why you find it so hard to achieve your goals, and solutions to every single one of these problems.

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