I have a really bad habit of setting unrealistic goals for myself and ultimately setting myself up for failure. I don’t know if this is a form of perfectionism or a side effect of being an entrepreneur.
Here’s a story that illustrates how crazy I can be.
My husband was backing out of the driveway, heading to work on his afternoon shift, and I came flying out the door to stop him and say, “I want to paint the house, so I’m heading to Sears to get the paint.” He immediately says, “No, you’re not.” Me, “Yes, I am.” Him, “No.” Me again, “Yes, the house looks like crap, and I am going to paint it; I just don’t want you to be shocked when you come home.” He rolls his eyes and continues to back out of the drive.
My husband is a saint. He supports me in all my crazy ideas. But, he knows it is not physically possible for me to paint our 2,500-square-foot tri-level home on my own. The crazy thing is, I literally thought I could!
So what do I do next? I load the four kids into the minivan, head to Sears, and buy like 30 gallons of paint. By the time I get home, it’s mid to late afternoon, and I start painting. Midway through painting the front half of the house, I realized that the T111 siding of the exterior of our home, which had never been painted before, was soaking up all my paint. So I pack up the kids again and head to the store to buy some primer.
Needless to say, by the time my husband returned home late that evening, the house was not painted. He pulled up, shaking his head, looking at the project that I had started and, of course, wasn’t able to finish. I was only able to finish the lower half of the front side of the house.
Here’s the thing…
In my mind, I really thought I was able to complete the project in one day! Honestly, I have no idea why I’m wired like this, I just am – and he knows it. They say it’s common that one person is typically the starter in the relationship, and the other is the finisher. I start projects, he finishes them. It’s true.
What does this have to do with business, Misty?
Throughout the years, I’ve gotten much better. I start and finish my projects now. My mind and body are starting to get more closely aligned. But every once in a while, my bad habit of setting unrealistic goals sets me up for disappointment. Today was one of those days.
One of the things I know I need to work on to reach my goals over the next 424 days is my health – specifically, my weight. I’ve not always been kind to myself and my body. I’ve prioritized work over movement. I’ve taken on unnecessary stress. And in recent years, going through menopause has really packed on the weight – 116 lbs, to be exact. The weight has really taken its toll on my mind, body, and spirit. I’m an introvert by nature, but the weight gain has kicked my desire to isolate myself into full gear and, along with it, a shame storm bigger than any Arizona haboob in history. (And yes, haboobs are a thing; you should look them up.)
So, one of my goals is to weigh 150 lbs by December 31, 2024 – 426 days from now.
When this journey started on 10/23/2023, I weighed in at 266.8 lbs.
Today, I weighed in at 264.4 lbs.
In the last 9 days, I lost 2.4 lbs.
It’s good, I know.
But, if I’m being honest, I really thought I’d lose more.
Here’s where my tendency to set unrealistic goals creeps in. In my logical mind, I know losing 1 – 2 lbs a week is amazing. But, with the work I’ve been putting in, I expected more.
Why am I sharing this?
Because we (as entrepreneurs) have the same mentality in building our business, we write a really good blog, do the work to step outside our comfort zone and record a video, or face our fears and finally set up and launch the podcast we’ve been talking about. But, they don’t get the views, likes, or comments we hoped for – and we start doubting if it’s worth it.
We want things to be easy.
We want our journey to be one victory after another.
We want immediate results from our hard work, facing our fears, and being uncomfortable.
Am I right? You know I am. I get it, and I want that, too!
But it doesn’t work that way.
Gaining 116 extra lbs didn’t happen overnight, and neither will losing it, and the same principle applies to building a successful business. Unrealistic goals can lead to frustration and self-doubt when we don’t see immediate results. Just like my impulsive attempt to paint the entire house in a day, we sometimes set ourselves up for disappointment by expecting too much too soon.
My weight loss journey, which I’ve started alongside my journey to “changing lanes,” is a tangible reminder of the importance of patience and perseverance. While I may have hoped for faster progress, I recognize that steady, sustainable growth is what truly matters.
I’m reminded that success is a journey, not a destination. It’s about consistent effort, resilience in the face of setbacks, and learning from my experiences. So, as I work towards my weight loss goal, I’m also applying these lessons to my journey in building my personal brand, reminding myself that meaningful achievements take time and dedication.
If you’ve ever felt disheartened by slow progress in your business, know that you’re not alone. I fight the urge to rush and demand immediate results, too. My focus is to just focus on what I can control, and that’s my activity and choices.