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success   Studies have shown that a larger percentage of people who set goals or make New Year’s resolutions fail to achieve them. A lot of resolutions do not go past the first few weeks after they were made. How many times have you personally made a resolution and totally abandoned it half way? The inability to meet your goals is not always an indication of laziness or nonchalance. Sometimes, it is simply because the goal setting approach is not compatible with your kind of person. An alternative to goal setting is what I call Not Setting Goals, aka freestyling. Not setting goals doesn’t mean you literally have no goals or ambition. It simply means you take a different approach to achieving them. It is about unconsciously working towards what you want to achieve. If your goal is to read a book per month for example, in a goal setting scenario, you probably aim to read a certain number of pages per day. If that doesn’t work for you, try the no goal setting method. Do not force yourself to read every day. Rather, you can pick a weekend when you are not busy, then get on with the book. You will find that if you finish the book, you will have still arrived at your goal but without the urgent feeling that comes with setting goals. If you are wondering how this approach differs from the usual, check this out.   Relieves Pressure Choosing to freestyle your goal setting relieves the pressure that comes with setting goals. You are not rushing to meet any self imposed deadlines. You will still meet your deadlines if you are committed, but without the usual nagging thought at the back of your mind. Simplifies the Process Let’s say you plan to take eight glasses of water per day as part of a weight loss regimen. Not writing it down and marking a spot every time you drink water can make actually achieving it easier. What you should do is incorporate the goal into your daily life unconsciously. Drink water at every opportunity, just because you feel like, and before you know it, you are unconsciously meeting your goals.   Not setting goals is all about unconsciously incorporating simple activities into your daily routine. These activities are the steps that build up to your overall goal. This approach may not be for everyone, as there are people who work better with writing down goals and setting a benchmark for achieving them. If however, you find that the method has never worked for you, try to do simple things that lead to the bigger picture of what you want to achieve.   About the author: Amina Salau is a writer and editor running The Illuminated Pen. You can find her online at and on Twitter (@_Aminah)

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This article was first published on 24th November 2014

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