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Feelgood Truths: The Problem With Goals

Ever had a goal that you just couldn’t seem to reach? In this episode of Feelgood Truths, Martin shares how he overcame the problem of a big goal and found a solution to achieve the desired result.


Episode #8 Transcript:

A few years ago I lost 30kg. And I tried plenty of times before, but the goal seemed insurmountable and I had lots of failure. I got type 1 diabetes when I was a kid, so I thought well maybe that’s just my thing.

But I decided rather than focusing on 30kg, let’s just focus on 2. And I changed a few things about what I did. I couldn’t believe it. I actually lost 2 kg. I can remember the day – I was so excited.

And then I thought well if I can lose 2kg, then maybe I can lose 5kg.

And I did it – WOW – and then 7kg and then 9kg and then I jet on going.

You see my goal was an expectation, and expectations produce stress. And that applies to any part of life, whether it’s fitness, or relationships or finance. And stress is good because it is the precursor to change, but too much stress can be overwhelming. And that can be very intolerable and can cause people to want to run.

And that’s why a lot of people give up on the big goal. Expectations can be external – something placed on you from outside – or they can be internal – just the pressure that you put on yourself.

Which is why with a big fitness goal, if you don’t achieve it, it can actually exacerbate that problem, it actually puts more pressure on you, and then the goal gets bigger, and then it even becomes more unachievable – more stress.

So what’s the antidote?

The antidote is instead of focussing on the 30, focus on the 2. Take the pressure off with a fitness activity that you want to do, not something that you have to do.

Reduce the level of expectation, and you reduce the level of stress and frustration.

Sure, think about the long-term goal but break it down and celebrate something in your workout today, not something that might happen in the distant future.

Just remember that any progress is progress.

If you enjoy it, if you celebrate it, you will get there.

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