I was listening to one of my favourite podcasts the other day (Lewis Howes – The School of Greatness if you want to check it out) and it really got me thinking! The guest he had on shared why he NEVER sets specific goals, yet he has achieved so much in his life, more than he could ever imagine!
He explained that when you set yourself a specific goal you are actually limiting yourself, because you are telling yourself that this is all that you can achieve. You are working towards something that your mind has decided upon, which leaves very little space for the universe to intervene to show you all that there is to achieve outside of this one goal.
It really caught my attention as I have been researching the different approaches to goal setting over the last few years, particularly when it comes to achieving optimal health and weight.
I remember back when I was a member of a running club and all my running was focused around achieving a quicker time in my next race. I would finish a 5k, 10k or half marathon and the success of that race was always related to the time I finished it in. Similar to weight loss too, when the success of health is only dictated by the number we manage to achieve on the scales (when health is so much more than this!).
I completely understand that setting a specific goal can really help us take the first step, to help us start to take action, to create change in some way. However, I can now see that so much can be missed when we are only focused on achieving this one specific goal.
Outside of my running races and the personal bests I was striving for, there was so much more that I was ‘achieving’ and experiencing along the way such as…
- Connecting with friends on long training runs
- Enjoying delicious food before and after races
- Raising money for charity
- Allowing my body to get fitter and stronger, despite how quick I ran
- Learned ways to overcome doubtful thoughts
- Improved my mental strength in all forms of exercise and in life in general, not just running
- The beautiful scenery – it is a fantastic way to sight see on holiday!
With this in mind I can now see that although setting a specific goal can help us move forward and stay motivated, this goal is what your mind has created, not the universe and the universe has its own plan, it could well be that you can achieve so much more and not always in the way you expect.
If you are interested in learning more about how you can achieve by letting go of rigid goal setting, then I’d definitely suggest picking up a copy of ‘The Universe has your back’ by Gabby Bernstein.
In the mean time I’d love to hear from you, do you set goals? What works for you and what doesn’t? Do you like the sound of stepping back and letting the universe lead the way when it comes to achieving?
Catch you soon!