1% Goals vs Impossible Goals

For the majority of my life I have found my value and worth through what I had to offer to others, what results I achieved, or my performance value.

I see myself as a recovering perfectionist and am now coming to accept that my worth is inherent. I am personalizing that worth has nothing to do with me, but all worth comes from the Creators that created me. For me those Creators are my Heavenly parents, God the Father and God the Mother. They are the Creators of my spirit and so the parents of my divine nature. I have inherited things through their divine DNA. Because of Them I have inherited my divine nature and an infinite worth that is unchangeable.

That is a shift for me. As a perfectionist, I would set goals and work towards them. But at the moment that “perfection” was in jeopardy, I would, more often than not, abandoned the goal altogether. And with the release of the goal went the release of my self worth.

This kept me from “failing” by not finishing a goal with less than perfection. But in reality, I was just failing ahead of time by abandoning the goal. And my perception of my worth was increasingly damaged along the way.

Over the past several years I have been doing the work on my own self and working towards a healthier lifestyle in all areas of life: mental, physical, emotional, intellectual and spiritual. Sometimes I am more successful in that than others, or in one area more than others. I find it has it’s own ebb and flow. But I also know that I have a greater impact on that ebb and flow than I previously gave myself credit for.

So what does any of this have to do with 1% Goals and Impossible Goals?

When I set goals in the past, it would be in an effort to “fix” all the things that were lacking in me. I would usually try to improve every area of my life all at once in multiple ways. It would be through massive changes that had no way to be sustainable for more than a few days or weeks, let alone years.

I reinforced to myself that I just couldn’t change “who I was” with behavior modification. I was too broken and beyond fixing. I had never been successful in the past, so why continue trying?

For the past year and a half I didn’t focus on the behavior modification as much as the mental modification. What if I wasn’t broken? What if I didn’t need “fixing”? Is that even a possibility?

I changed less about the physical things I did and how I physically showed up, but I have changed so much about the way I mentally and emotionally show up….for others, and most importantly for myself.

So as we moved into this year, as generally happens, people talked of goals and what grand things they want to achieve in 2022. One of the tools we commonly use in coaching is referred to as the “Impossible Goal”. Always working towards an impossible goal to stretch ourselves, and to prove what is possible.

My brain was being extremely resistant to the idea of goals at all. But I have been especially resistant to an Impossible Goal. I was stuck in the patterns of the past and not wanting to put myself at “risk” of failure in such a big way.

So I spent some time mulling over the concept of this Impossible goal. And at the same time I began looking more and more at James Clear and his concept of 1% change as he outlines in his book Atomic Habits. How could the two work together and become somewhat synergistic? What could that look like?

So this year I am working on a new experiment. I have in fact, set an impossible goal for myself. And different than in years previously, I have been telling people what that impossible goal is. That hasn’t been the way I operated previously. In the past I wouldn’t tell anyone about my goals until I actually achieved them because of the shame I would feel when I would inevitably “fail”.

But now I have redefined what “failure” means to me. And with my definition, I will always be able to achieve whatever I decide to achieve as long as I remain committed to that end. Failure is just a tool for me to grow and develop into the person who is able to achieve that end.

As I discussed my impossible goal today with my older daughter she made the observation that my goal is not even impossible. Hard? Yes; But not impossible.

As a perfectionist, I would set goals and work towards them. But at the moment that “perfection” was in jeopardy, I would, more often than not, abandon the goal altogether. And with the release of the goal went the release of my self worth.

Hello Friends!

I’m Michelle. I am learning how to minimize my overwhelm, perfectionism, and people-pleasing and I am ready to help you do the same. I’m a certified Life Coach and a member of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. Come with me and learn how.

…my impossible goal is impossible more so because it requires me to show up for myself consistently, for a year…..in a loving and compassionate way. Not berating myself to do it just so I could say I achieved it.

The goal isn’t about “the goal” so much as it is about the person I become in the process.

And that’s when it all came into clear view for me as I explained it to her. My impossible goal is a physical goal. But it is not so much impossible because I couldn’t physically do it, although if it were this weekend it would be pretty close to impossible to complete and still be able to move :). But my impossible goal is impossible more so because it requires me to show up for myself consistently, for a year…..in a loving and compassionate way. Not berating myself to do it just to say I achieved it.

The goal isn’t about “the goal” so much as it is about the person I become in the process.

And that is where I am intertwining the 1% goals with the Impossible goal.

In his book, Clear talks about the small 1% changes that we can make habits that move us towards not just what we want to achieve, but who we want to become. It’s not a goal to run a specific race but to become someone who is active and values exercise; Not to complete a specific course or degree but to become someone who values life long learning; Not to paint a picture but to become someone who creates; Not to practice meditation everyday for a month but to become someone who is a calm and centered person.

As of today, I do not think I could possibly run nearly 47 miles over three consecutive day, but I can walk/run 2 miles today. And that will move me toward my impossible goal. I don’t have to kill myself in the process. This is real “Tortoise and the Hare” type stuff for me. I have a plan. I just need to execute my plan and my goal is as good as done.

Next week I will tell you why that will be harder that it sounds 🙂

If you would like help and support along with tools that can guide you in your 1% goals “Contact Me” and send me a quick email. If you prefer, you can “Schedule a Consult” for a free session to discuss what you want to work towards and how to get started.

And as always…..Remember…..It’s ALL good!!

Published by mrkeil

I help women face the overwhelm of parenting, family and multiple schedules, let go of the shame and people-pleasing perfectionism they place on themselves as women of faith, and create a life they love with intention and purpose. I can help you find your own answers for any problem, reach for any goal, and discover how to be more of yourself as you learn tools to use your own gifts to strengthen yourself emotionally, physically, intellectually and spiritually. In choosing to design your life and live into compassion and lessen the guilt and judgment, you can teach your family to do the same. Find the real you by showing up authentically for yourself and the ones you love. And remember... It's ALL good!!!

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