Have you ever set a goal for yourself, only to find that by your planned date of achievement, nothing much has changed?
Maybe you made a little progress, or maybe things just kept “getting in the way” and prevented you from even starting.
Perhaps you even went so far as making visual reminders for your goal, enlisting an accountability buddy, or bought all of the “supplies,” only to find that these methods that you thought would ensure success eventually fell short.
Whether personal or professional, making positive life changes is no simple task. Even those of us with the most laser-focused intentions and well-planned roadmaps are vulnerable to getting lost or not having the follow-through that we envisioned for ourselves. You might be surprised to learn that despite the variety and uniqueness of goals that roll around in each of our brains, we’re all susceptible to encountering common barriers to achieving them.
In this article, I’ll demystify the 5 common roadblocks to accomplishing our goals and show how a life coach can help you conquer them.
The 5 Common Obstacles to Achieving Goals
Most of us want to have a healthier, happier, and more satisfying life…but what does that really mean? When it comes down to it, “having a successful career” looks different for every single person because we have our unique definitions of what “success” truly means. Without clarity on what we actually want, it’s as if we’re throwing darts with a blindfold on, just hoping to eventually hit a bullseye. As a life coach, I help clients drill-down exactly what their best life looks like so we can determine practical steps to making these dreams a reality.
Taking a One-Size-Fits-All Approach
How many times have you tried the newest diet trend, fitness regimen, or lifestyle “challenge” that a friend/neighbor/celebrity/family member swore by, only to find that your results were nothing near what was promised? Whether our goals are to build a better relationship with our partner, loving the body we see in the mirror, or finding fulfillment in our careers, there is no simple seven step plan. Your desire for a more fulfilling life is as unique as the DNA and stardust that comprise your body, so no two paths are ever quite the same. Working with a life coach gives you the specialized attention to help design a life that honors your unique spirit, personality, lifestyle, and beliefs.
Uncertainty of Actionable Steps
As you’re reading this, you might be thinking, “Well, I know exactly what I want.” If so, that’s a wonderful start!
So, how are you going to make it happen? Ah, there’s the rub. Even if we have the clearest goals, such as being promoted to a manager in five years or saving enough money for a 2 week vacation with the kids, most of us don’t know how to actually get from Point A to Point “Retiring at Age 45.” Think of a life coach as a flashlight, a tool you can use to find your way through the unknown, uncovering safe next steps and determining potential alternate routes.
Here’s a free tip: the simplest first step is to schedule a free exploratory coaching session with a life coach to see how they can help you develop a roadmap to your ultimate destination!
Loose Timeframe for Accomplishing Steps
Alright, let’s say you’ve made it so far as having a clear goal and even at least a few next steps. Have you ever heard of Parkinson’s Law? It’s the old adage that says, “Work expands so as to fill the time available for its completion.” For example, say you want to revise and send out your resume. If you leave an ambiguous or unmotivated deadline like “sometime in the next six months,” you’re probably going to take about six months to get the resume just right…if you do accomplish it. However, if you were to give yourself a goal of having that resume ready to go in two weeks, you’re far more likely to achieve it within that timeframe. The key to following through with your action plan is to strike the perfect deadline balance that is prompt enough to inspire your momentum and realistic enough to avoid setting yourself up for failure. Within each coaching session, we establish benchmarks to maintain motivation and avoid stagnation. This also gives us the opportunity to celebrate every success on the way toward achieving your goals!
Lack of Support
It’s no secret that with anything we’re trying to tackle in life, from the smaller daily tasks to the loftier efforts, it’s far easier if we don’t feel we’re doing it alone. Not only that, but people who feel supported along their journeys to making positive life changes are far more likely to succeed. Even if you have a very supportive partner or best friend, it’s helpful to have a dependable source of encouragement and accountability whom also has a professional bond to your success.
For example, think of the fanciest, most labor-intensive dish you could ever cook, even if you’ve never attempted it. Say you decided to give it a shot, but in the process you burned your entrée to a crisp or realized you made a serious ingredient measurement. Do you think you would be more motivated to keep going if your friend Betty was waving a flag and cheering you on, or if Gordon Ramsey was standing by your side and helping you find alternatives? As your life coach, I am accessible even between sessions for anything from a quick pep-talk to a check-in and reassessment of your planned approach. Just as a soccer coach is running up and down the field with their players during a game, I will be there on every stride toward your victory!
As you can see, achieving our goals can be tricky for a variety of reasons, and working with a life coach can be a priceless resource in overcoming the common hurdles we all encounter. To learn more about how I have helped young women transform into purpose-driven professional leaders, visit my Unlocked Goddess Coaching page.