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Secrets to Achieving your Goals

Setting a goal and achieving it is pretty hard. I think anyone who has set a new years resolutions can attest to this. The whole “new year, new me” often falls apart in the first couple of weeks, which is why “blue monday” exists (although not necessarily factual). 

It makes sense; our goals aren’t easy to achieve, the challenge is what makes them a goal, but that challenge is also why we often fail at reaching it. 

Why do we fail? 

It’s hard to stay on track. We’re good (if you’re like me) at convincing yourself to do the opposite of what you know you should do and our emotions and conditioning doesn’t help. You KNOW you should save money but you’re feeling crappy one day and you decide to buy $100 worth of clothing that you don’t necessarily need, but you somehow convinced yourself that you do need it. Those shorts ARE necessary. In winter. Okay so maybe they aren’t….but you REALLY want them and they’re on sale! And..and..and.. What if they go out of stock and stop making them? (which could happen, remember that t-shirt you wanted but waited for a sale and when you went back it was gone…FOREVER???) then you’ll regret it….and do you REALLY want to live your life with REGRETS?? 

See how easy we were able to convince ourselves logically to buy something we didn’t need? This logic is helped by the feeling of crap you are experiencing at that moment and that you (if you’re like me) were conditioned by consumerism to believe that ‘shiny and new’ things make you feel better. Which they do, for a short short period of time

This goes for anything difficult. From saving money to working out to eating healthy. It takes effort. 

Another reason we often fail at our goals is that we set ourselves up to do so. We make it impossible (in our minds at least) to succeed or feel success. 

How do we do this? 

1. We don’t set a ‘real’ goal, or something obtainable.

A goal needs to have a way to MEASURE that you’re successful or not. For example: “I want to feel healthier”. Sure if you’re honest yourself you may not feel healthy or you may feel healthy one day and not the next. At the end of the given timeline of that goal, you won’t know you’ve succeeded or failed. Feelings are fluid and probably shouldn’t be used as a measuring stick, at least in the beginning. This is especially true if you’re particularly hard on yourself, because ultimately you’ll feel like a failure. 

2.  We set overarching goals that can feel (and look) damn near impossible to achieve.

What does that mean? We make our goals seem too high or too difficult to reach and we ultimately give up before we even start. Example? I want to save $10,000.00 this year. Well shit. That’s a lot of money, don’t you think? Where the HECK are you going to find $10,000???  It’ll never happen, screw it, I’m buying that pair of shorts to make myself feel better for being so…….broke? 

If any of these ring true, that’s great, you’re like me in one way or another. If not, feel free to find another one of my posts to read. The following may not help you!

So, now that we know what stops us from being successful, how do we fix it and become successful? 

1. Determine your WHY. Why do you want to achieve the goal you’re about to set? Do you want a chance to live longer for your kids? Do you want to build generational wealth? Why? What is your WHY? Simon Sinek put me on this notion years ago and I’ve focused on my WHY’s ever since. Knowing why you’re doing something will help you keep moving forward when you stumble on your way to your “WHAT” which is your goals. 

2. Pen and Paper that ish. Write out your goals, keeping them in your head keeps it in the realm of ‘possibly’ whereas writing them makes them real. Once on paper they create a sense of accountability, it’s not just something you made up and forgot, it’s recorded. 

2. Set a goal, it can be a massive overarching goal (don’t worry). So if you want to lose 50lbs or save $10,000 set that as your goal BUT it must be a solid, achievable and MEASURABLE goal. No, “I want to feel richer” that’s not going to help in this case. 

3. Create MICRO goals. Yes, yes I know MORE GOALS?? Trust me, this is helpful, just keep reading. It’s possible to get overwhelmed by our BIG/MACRO goals, which often stops us from even starting (as i wrote above) but that shouldn’t stop us from setting those goals, instead we should set our goals and work backwards. How does that work? So let’s say you want to save $10,000 in a year. Seems super difficult doesn’t it? BUT can you cut out $200 a week? Have you even LOOKED? $200 a week in cuts will save you approximately $10,000 in a year. If you can’t do it, then that’s fine but often you can take a look at what you spend and make SOME cuts. You can look at what you spent last year (on emotional buys) and realize you could have saved $5k alone. You may not be able to reach that goal but by making the goal smaller and ACTIONABLE you have a higher likelihood of achieving them. 


I like making my micro goals ACTION items. So instead of saying “save $200 a week”, I write out “review monthly expenses and remove any unnecessary costs” or “buy 1 less coffee a week” or even “buy 1 smaller coffee” a week. Doing these provide little successes, which keeps you motivated and moves you towards your ultimate goal. 

Think about it, “buy 1 less t-shirt this month” seems to be a LOT more doable than “save $10k in 1 year, doesn’t it? 

4. Track your progress. 

Whether it’s an activity tracker, calorie counting app or a separate bank account for your saved money. Have a place where you can track your progress. This helps with the feeling of progress, success and ultimately, motivation. 

5. Build a habit. I read somewhere that it takes 21 days (3 weeks to create a habit) I ready recently that was incorrect, it’s closer to 66 days. Despite that, I say aim for 21 one days first. Aim to do something consistently/daily for 21 days straight, you’ll notice that whatever you’re doing becomes EASIER. So if that means going on a walk once a day around the block at lunch, do it EVERYDAY without fail for 21 days. I’d be willing to bet you’ll be closer to creating a habit after that 3rd week. 

TIP: Make it easy on yourself. If you’re going to work out daily, find the most ideal time for you. That means if you’re not a morning person, don’t set your workouts at 5am. No doubt you can force yourself to get up, but there’s one more factor that’s working against you. You want to set your habits to be maintainable for the foreseeable future, not just something you will have to push through for a few months because that’s how we slide backwards. That’s how we end up worse off than when we started. 

6. Don’t be so hard on yourself. It’s easy to stumble. Stuff happens. There’s a party you over eat at or an emergency you needed to spend money on. That’s fine. Success in ANYTHING isn’t linear. No matter how much society and media attempts to tell us otherwise. There WILL be stumbling blocks. As I like to tell my son, the best part of falling down is getting the opportunity to get back up. 

So, those are my secrets to achieving your goals. Tried, failed and tested by yours truly. 

– Kenners!

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