5 Things I Have Learned About Goal Setting

5 things I have learned about goal setting

Designed by: Brandon Groce

Lessons I’ve Learned About Goal Setting From Life, Teachers, And Experience.

Most of us have goals or something we want to achieve. It could be to lose an amount of body fat, to hold a handstand, to squat double your bodyweight, or even something like learning a new language.
My personal goals were to accomplish a stalder press handstand which I succeeded at and a five second one arm handstand which is close to being finished.

What about you? What are your goals? Are they good ones? Or could they be better?

01.What I Learned From School

I’ll be honest, I didn’t learn much in school. School curriculum is quite behind when it comes to fields of movement, nutrition, health, exercise etc. But it is one place where I did learn about goal setting. A good goal should be measurable. Why? Well let me give you an example.

Take a person looking to lose weight. They are unhappy with their size and they know their health is suffering. They take up the goal of losing weight so they will feel better and live to see their full life expectancy fulfilled. However, they don’t make their goal measurable. They don’t set a particular goal on how much body fat they want to lose.

Say they are one hundred pounds overweight. They lose five. Technically, they accomplished their goal, so they relax a bit. People who attain their their goal of weight loss can have a slice of peach cobbler, right? All of the sudden, with those couple celebrations of weight loss through peach cobbler they say to themselves, “Wait, where did these extra ten pounds come from?!” You see the issue here?

What To Do Instead

What could this person have done to make their situation better? They could have set the goal of losing one hundred pounds with five pound increments every three weeks. This is a measurable goal that leads you to keeping up with it. Instead of lounging around with a false sense of accomplishment. You can be happy about the milestones, but they just motivate you to getting to the overall main goal.

02. Lessons From Teachers

I’ve learned some great lessons about goal setting from some of the greatest out there as well. One is Charles Poliquin who’s seminars I had the pleasure of attending many times over the past year and a half. Charles has coached athletes in many different Olympic Events and strives to give the best service possible. In the strength and conditioning field, you can’t help but notice Charles Poliquin. What I learned from him:

Goals need to have associated behaviors. There is a word for a goal without an associated behavior. It’s called a wish. For example, “I want to hold a handstand for 60 seconds.”

That’s great but I also want chocolate doughnuts to be healthy for me and increase my lean muscle mass while lowering my inflammation. But that’s not going to happen, now is it?

Now as for my handstand goal, that will not get accomplished unless there is an attached behavior along with it. Every goal should have behaviors attached to it. What this means is there is a goal I want to achieve (destination) and things I do to achieve that goal (directions to that destination).

A Better Example

I want to achieve a 60 second handstand. So I will:
•Practice at least twice a day each day.
•Attend a seminar on handstands every four months.

Looks much better, right? Now you have the destination, and a map to achieving you. You have a goal and an attached behavior.

03. What Will You Give Up?

The second lesson from Poliquin was to figure out what you are willing to give up. You want to be a world renown athlete? Then those late nights at the club aren’t going to help you reach every bit of your potential. Will you give them up?
What about fat loss? You want to lean out but you like to go out drinking on Friday night. This is a set back and not pushing you toward your goal. If it doesn’t push you toward your goal, it is pushing you away from your goal. Figure out what you are willing to give up.
Personally, I have given up processed food and staying up late. Both cause me to be more inflamed and recover slower, making my goals that much further.

By giving up these two things, I improve my ability to accomplish what I set out to do.
I have also learned from a man named Ido Portal. If you don’t know who he is, look him up. Ido is a movement teacher and a person who walks the talk. A video of him can show you exactly what you need to begin to know. I highly suggest you check him out to learn more. I haven’t had the pleasure of meeting him yet, but after following him for years and attending seminars, I have learned two things:


Passion is weak and lackluster. Passion works when there is motivation. And sadly, there is not always motivation. Motivation comes and goes day in and day out. Personally, I have to spend each morning bringing myself a bit of motivation through watching videos of people who have achieved my goals. But I will without a doubt do that each day because I have one thing: Obsession.
You want to be obsessed about your goals. You want to try day in and day out, and all the time to be accomplishing them. That is how real goals get accomplished.

For example, when learning the one arm handstand, I would at first spend one session a day on my hands working toward one arm. It wasn’t until I became obsessed with goal that the progress would begin to show. Three sessions a day, plus working on mobility and flexibility to hold the handstand more efficiently, as well as seeing various teachers to learn from them. Was it expensive and time consuming? Yes. But I am obsessed with this goal and will accomplish it. Obsession will get you to your goals much faster than passion.

04. You Are The Average

The next lesson I learned from Ido is that you are the average of the five people you spend the most time with. Is your goal to get as massive as humanly possible? Hanging out with Woody Allen isn’t going to get you there. You want to be able to move well? Then the immobile body builders in your gym are not going to be the best influence, are they? No.

You need to be around people who push you toward your goals and people who are better than you. This is one of the reasons I go to so many seminars. I want to learn from people with great ideas who are also smarter, faster, stronger or more mobile than me. It inspires me to push myself and achieve just like they have. Do not doubt the power of being around people who are achieving your goal day in and day out. Over time, you will notice yourself changing and growing right along with them. Find a circle of people who push you toward your goal.

05. My Experience

Lastly, in my own experience, I have found it is important to make sure you don’t have crabs. No, not those crabs! I mean that just like there are people who push you toward your goals, there are people who weigh you down, similar to how caught crabs will pull each other back into a bucket to keep each other from escaping. You absolutely must rid yourself of these people while trying to accomplish your goals. If they are not helping you reach them, they are setting you back.

This may be the person who knows about your diet but insist you have just one bite of cake. Or the person who knows you want to be the best in your field but drags you out every late night pulling you away from refining your craft. Remove them in exchange for people who push you toward your goals. You will see much better results with real encouragement and drive. Start by finding people who already have accomplished your goals and work from there.

There you have it. Five things I have learned about goals in my life that I hope will help you reach yours! 

Philip Chubb
Philip Chubb is a teacher, trainer, and student who has learned from a variety of great teachers such a the Poliquin Group, Ido Portal Method, Yuri Marmerstein, Gymnastic Bodies, and more. In the past ten years, he has researched and learned about movement, nutrition, hormones, training, martial arts, hand balancing, gymnastics, tumbling, dance, biomechanics and much more. He's life emphasis is moving and improving both physically and mentally each day.
Philip Chubb
Philip Chubb

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