Monday, May 11, 2015

One Reason to think Twice before Sharing your Goals

According to recent studies, people who talk about their goals and dreams are less likely to achieve them, than those who don’t.  On the flip side, I was told by my mentors that when you share your goals with others, you are likely to actively pursue and achieve them.  

Well, what’s the reason behind these varying schools of thought?

The notion behind the first school of thought is that when you talk about your goals with vivid detail, thought and information, you receive a sense of having already accomplished the goal.

The response from others is positive and they are impressed by the amount of research, the purpose, the vision and the purpose of your goal.  According to this study, "When other people take notice of an individual's identity-related behavioral intention, this gives the individual a premature sense of possessing the aspired-to identity."

We desire to achieve the goal, but sometimes the identity associated with the goal and the actions supporting it is enough for us to meet our goals half way.  

On the contrary, when you declare your goal and share it with others, you may feel more accountable to completing your goal.  

Since there's merit in both schools of thought, I've created a short list for when to share your goals and when not to share your goals:

• Share it with your journal as an affirmation.  Declare in words that you are that.  In fact, according to the second school of thought when we declare that we are something, we begin to align our thoughts, attitudes and actions appropriately.  Write Down the goal in the present tense, I am…

Do not share the “I am …”  with others, until you have reached major supporting milestones that are evidence that you are that.  Otherwise, according to the study, you will be more content with talking the talk, but not walking the walk.  That’s if you are also ok with being perceived as a wanna be or an all talk, but little action type of person.

• Share your goals and dreams with people who will hold you accountable – a manager, or people in your mastermind group.

• Share them when you need mentorship and coaching.

• Do not share when you are seeking a boost in your credibility, as if you have already achieved the goal.

• Do not share when you are looking to boast your confidence, or when you want to brag about a milestone achieved.  “Ah!

 I just completed my website; therefore I am on my way to making millions!”  Not.

• Share your goals with a trusted friend, a dream enabler, when you need a bit of encouragement.  “I am having a tough time completing this website.  It seems like there is no end in site.”

• Do not share your dreams with someone who will bully you out of them. Unless your claws come out when someone tells you that you can’t do something and you propel to action to prove that person wrong.  

So, let's hear where you stand on this.  Are you more inclined to share your goals with others for social accountability?  Do you find yourself completing your goals as a result?  Or, do you keep your goals personal, until you're nearing the finish line to completion?  When do you and don't you share your goals?

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