This time of year, there’s always a lot of talk about new beginnings, resolutions and goals – “New Year, New You” and all that good stuff.

The interesting thing is, when you stop to notice, many goals are more about superficial benefits than deeper meaning. And they’re often driven more by pleasing others than pleasing ourselves.

For example, how many of us have undertaken study to increase our career prospects (to please others so they promote us) rather than studying topics we had a genuine interest in (pleasing ourselves). I have. And who of us hasn’t wanted to lose weight to be more attractive (pleasing others) but then not built the habits to make it happen because that reason ultimately isn’t compelling enough? I’ve done that too.

Research tells us that the more deeply important our goals are to us, the more likely we are to achieve them. The deeper our goals, the more we will subconsciously and consciously create action plans in our minds and find ways to make them happen.

Goals that go beyond the surface also help us to persevere when life gets in the way, as it inevitably does. Some days we’ll lack motivation. We’ll lose our enthusiasm. But if our goals truly mean something to us, they’ll pull us towards them, back on track.

Action Steps

Here’s how to create goals with a deeper meaning that will connect with who you truly are and be easier to achieve as a result…

  1. Start with identifying your key values. What’s most important to you? Spend some time getting clear on your core values.  This free resource will help with that. It doesn’t take long – you already know your values, it’s just a matter of getting them front of mind.
  2. Dig deeply into why your goal is important to you. Ask yourself why that answer is important to you. Keep repeating that process until you get to the point where you become emotional thinking about that answer. The answer that elicits the emotion for you will be the meaningful reason that you’re looking for.
  3. Connect your goals to that deeper reason. It will give you a deeper level of desire, drive and perseverance to keep going until you reach that goal. Going deeper will also deliver you a more fulfilling outcome.

If you have goals that you’d like to achieve, why not consider your deeper reasons for doing them?

Adele Sinclair is a wellness coach and trainer who focuses on mental wellbeing at work. She has a background in management and experienced job burnout twice as a result of ongoing work stress. If you liked this article, you'll love Adele's coaching programs to help you with strategies for a great worklife.