Life Goals- Should You Keep Your Goals to Yourself?
When I was younger, I used to be very open about the direction I was going in life, and by that I mean both professionally and personally. However, as I’ve grown older I’ve realised I’ve kept schtum about a lot of goals I’ve set for myself.
With the end of the year drawing nigh, I’m in semi-reflective mode and one of the thought- provoking questions that’s prevalent in my mind is- should you keep your life goals to yourself? Continue Reading for my take on this topic.
First things first, life goals can be anything you are passionate or intent on achieving- writing a book, flying a plane, getting married by a particular age…
There are so many articles on whether it’s a good idea to share one’s goals or not, American entrepreneur, David Sivers during a TED Talk insisted we should keep our goals to ourselves because, ‘.. repeated psychology tests have proven that telling someone your goal makes it less likely to happen’, he attributes this to the fact that, ‘ when you tell someone your goal and they acknowledge it, psychologists have found that it’s called a “social reality.” The mind is kind of tricked into feeling that it’s already done. And then because you’ve felt that satisfaction, you’re less motivated to do the actual hard work necessary.’
Another article shares a different view, Stridekick.com believes that by telling your goals to your amigos, it makes you more likely to achieve them because via sharing we become more motivated to achieve our goals as we feel more accountable.
So are there any benefits to waxing lyrical to your mates, colleagues or relatives about your goals? Well, I think ultimately each person should do what they are comfortable with- i.e. if you sit on the ‘sharing is caring fence’ then more power to you. I however will be sitting very far away from you and here is why-
Reasons why I keep my Life Goals to myself
Pressure– I find that when I tell someone about a particular goal, more often than not, that person will remind me of the goal by asking questions like- whether I’ve achieved the goal, how close I am to it etc. And rather than this harmless prodding giving me motivation, I feel pressure and stress.
Failure– some of the goals I’ve had have not been realised, and personally, what makes those pills even harder to swallow is that, I didn’t just fail but I failed ‘publicly’. I am one of those people who don’t feel a sense of comfort when people say ‘Sorry’ or ‘Better luck next time’ etc, I rather boost my confidence up in my own way which I don’t expect others to be aware of. Because of that, I’d rather keep my goal to myself in the first place. Also people judge, even our friends, they may not mean to but they are only human, so I feel that the more we fail in certain areas, the more our friends will identify us with that failure.
Odd Ball– I love reading articles about companies that were set up by two friends or seeing Instagram accounts run by best friends, I have great friends but I have taken such different professional and personal paths from them and the knockback effect I’ve found with that is I don’t have someone in my life whose professional or personal vision bears any resemblance to mine. This didn’t matter in my 20s but now I feel more inclined to open up about my life goals with people who have been on a similar-ish journey to mine. Take for example blogging- this is one of my biggest passions at the moment and I have a few blogging goals but I have no good friend with a blog (fashion or not) with a similar background to mine- e.g. used to work full-time in fashion, now focused on content marketing full-time roles in lifestyle sectors etc, started taking their blog seriously this year…so I keep schtum about the goals I’ve set for my blog.
Face me I face you– this is a Nigerian expression that pretty much boils down to- I will treat you how you treat me. I realised not too long ago that when it came to my goals- i.e. the ups and downs of achieving them, I was the only one going into a lot of detail about it- e.g. if my goal was to get X job, I would be open about the journey, i.e. share the rejections that came my way etc. Then I realised that people in the same situation as me were not being as vocal, so I began to feel like the big L-O-S-E-R in the group. One way to fix that problem? I shut the fuck up.
Well these are just a few reasons why I keep my life goals to myself. Honestly I find that it works for me. And don’t get me wrong, I do talk to my friends if I feel they can contribute positively to a goal I want to achieve. However, when I do, I keep the end goal to myself. So for e.g. when I wanted to get X job in X company and I needed someone in my field to analyze my CV. I reached out to a friend who I knew had friends who worked in my sector and she referred me to her colleague who was a star. That was only one piece of my ‘life goal puzzle’, so I didn’t mind sharing, I would have been pretty silly not to…Do you see the distinction here?
Anyhoo, I’d love to hear from you, what tactics do you have in place for achieving goals? What’s your stance on your goal setting skills? Do you share your goals with others?
PS These pics were taken when the sun was still friends with Berlin during summer, tsigh…