Well, yes, it is.
However, a client recently emailed me and said that one of his friends has been giving him a hard time for not “setting high enough goals in his life.” He asked what I thought and it got me on a bit of a rant about the whole concept of “goal-setting” in general…
I think the idea that it’s *good* to be driven and have lots of goals is bullsh–. But I talk to enough people who want to change their current results in life that I thought I would post my response here too.
So first, let’s clear something up: I’m NOT saying that you shouldn’t set goals. I am absolutely a fan of goal-setting. I set goals consistently, and in all areas of my life.
The problem that I see many people run into is when they mistake setting goals for getting goals.
Anyone can feel motivated, and anyone can SET goals. I could set the goal right now that I’m going to do 1,000 push-ups (right now I can only do about 5 hehe), and I could impress some people with that goal. “Oh, wow, look how driven Liz is. Look at the high standards she sets for herself!”
So, of course there might be “no goal that scares you.” That’s because goals are only ideas. I could talk all day about doing 1,000—5,000–1 million push-ups! It’s not scary to talk about it.
But the real growth happens when I actually do 6, which is more than I could do before. And someone might look at that and say, “Oh, only 6 push-ups? You didn’t set a high enough goal!” But I just increased my amount, I grew in strength.
In other words, setting goals is only as meaningful as actual progress, achievement, and growth. Don’t be “goal driven.” Be “growth driven.”
Growth happens when you have an equal balance of challenge and support.
Challenge is pushing yourself to grow. It’s fighting through the ache and burn of your muscles to get in that sixth or seventh push-up.
Support is where you give yourself a break–letting the muscles heal, getting a massage, a giving yourself a reward for your achievement. It’s the yin “rest and relax” that keeps the yang “drive” going. This might not look as cool as being constantly driven, but it is a more effective way to make actual progress.
This is relative to where you are in life, too. For example, let’s say that someone has never had a job, and they set the goal to get a job. Maybe that person gets a job working the grill at McDonalds. And we could go, “Oh, McDonalds, that’s not a very prestigious job.” But that person has accomplished more than an unemployed college grad who is living in mom’s basement because “there are no good jobs out there” and he is too proud to take that fry cook job in the meantime. (By the way, I saw lots of my friends go broke, eat ramen, and/or move in with parents because they “couldn’t find a job” after college. Meanwhile they turned their nose up at me for being a waitress right after I graduated. But I digress…:) ).
Now let’s say someone works as a high-level manager of a stable company. Well, it would be silly for him to get that McDonalds job–he’s already overqualified. So let’s say he wants to open his own company. What are his next steps of progress? Is it to talk to his friends about his “million dollar idea” over beers? No, although you’d be surprised at how many people spend most of their time on that “step.”
Setting super high goals might impress people, but it is NOT the most effective way to actually accomplish things. There is a point of overwhelm. 1,000 push-ups is daunting for someone who can only do 1. And in a state of overwhelm, we freak out, get down on ourselves, and say, “Oh, I can’t do this! Fuck it…I’ll just go eat cookies and sit on the couch because I’ll never be strong enough.” But set the goal of 6 pushups, and that feels manageable. Then when 6 becomes easy, set the goal of 7…One day you will reach 1,000. Seems too slow? It is the fastest, most effective way to go!
The point is, everyone has a “million dollar business idea” but very few people set up businesses. Everyone has a “killer Hollywood movie idea” but few people will put the work in to make it reality. And most of the time, those who do have million and billion-dollar businesses started with a passion, not the goal to make money. And they grew their businesses one step at a time.
Don’t set big goals. Set SMART goals. Set goals that push you past your comfort zone, and that you can achieve. Set goals that lead you, one step at a time, to actually achieving what you want in life. Even if one of those steps is taking a job at McDonalds, or doing just one more pushup than you did yesterday.
Ok, so what does all this have to do with flirting?
Flirting is all about growing in small steps. Nobody goes from zero to Lothario in one day. So ask yourself: Where do you get stuck? If you’re too shy to even approach someone you’ve never met before, then make it a goal to walk up and say hello. That’s it! Then once hello feels pretty comfortable, make it your goal to ask them out or get a phone number.
Wherever you get stuck, set your goal to get just past it.
One of the best parts about flirting is that it’s so much more fun than doing push-ups! So you can relax and have fun while you are moving through your stuck spots and pushing past your comfort zone. Most of my clients have shared with me that when they flirt, their goals are to:
- Meet great people
- Enjoy themselves, and
- Potentially find a partner.
So, keep saying hello to people until you enjoy it (if you aren’t at that level already!). Need a smaller step? Make your goal to say hello to people until you feel less anxiety. Yes, your next step can be, “Okay, I’m going to say hello again while taking deep breaths and forcing my body to relax!”
If you grow a little more each day, you will lead a successful life. And you will be an expert flirt! Take your time and smell the roses along the way. You just might meet that special person as soon as you take the time to enjoy yourself!
P.S. Want a little more “how to”? Pick up a copy of “One Small Step Can Change Your Life” by Robert Maurer. The first step is clicking on the link.