“My goal is always the same: to keep the other player from ever scoring a point. That doesn’t always happen, but that’s what I try for.” – Venus Williams; b. 1980
Can too aspirational a goal demotivate? If someone does not believe a goal is achievable, can that hurt performance? Only if you let it; only if YOU choose to frame it that way!
Personally, I LOVE setting “impossible goals” because it forces me to expand my thinking. As Arnold J Toynbee said “It is a paradoxical but profoundly true and important principle of life that the most likely way to reach a goal is to be aiming not at that goal itself but at some more ambitious goal beyond it.” Furthermore, much of life is incremental, many outcomes allow you to build upon them, most results can become stepping stones to even greater things. Every time at bat, I want a home run yet I will cheerfully take getting on base and build, build, build from there. Or as Vince Lombardi put it: “Perfection is not attainable, but if we chase perfection we can catch excellence.”
Also, the more daring, the more aspirational the goal, the more it juices me, the more it arouses my passion, my enthusiasm.
“It always seems impossible until it’s done.” – Nelson Mandela
“To the timid and hesitating everything is impossible because it seems so.” – Sir Walter Scott
“Because a thing seems difficult for you, do not think it impossible for anyone to accomplish.” – Marcus Aurelius
“We have more power than will; and it is often by way of excuse to ourselves that we fancy things are impossible.” – Francois Duc De la Rochefoucauld
As always, I share what I most want and need to learn. – Nathan S. Collier