Interview with life coach: "Most of the goals are along the way"

Lose weight, earn more money, find your dream partner: many people have big goals just in time for the new year.

Interview with life coach: "Most of the goals are along the way"

Lose weight, earn more money, find your dream partner: many people have big goals just in time for the new year. However, many New Year's resolutions fail after just a few days or weeks. Greator founder and author Dr. Stefan Frädrich in an interview with Your book title "Why goals are nonsense" seems a little demotivating at first glance. Why do you think goals are inappropriate?

dr Stefan Frädrich: Goals are nonsense because we always miss most goals in life anyway. If you want to lose five kilos, for example, you pull yourself together for a while until the yo-yo effect comes and then everything starts all over again. That said, most people know how to achieve goals by making a short-term project out of it. But they don't stick around in the long run.

Why is that?

There is a second factor that is much more important: the path you take. In the long term, you should eat more vegetables, exercise more and drink more water instead of beer. This can be applied to all areas of life. People want a career but hate their job or hate what they have to do to get it. If you want to improve the partnership, you only do it once and then think that you have already done it. This is the psychological trap. Because you have set yourself something and defined the goal, you think you have already done it. This prevents you from concentrating on the implementation. You just got rid of your bad conscience with the goal.

Why is it often not possible to implement it despite apparently high motivation?

This happens because there is a third level and that is the meaning of action. Someone wants to lose five kilos and for that you would have to eat differently and live differently. Anyone who has enjoyed eating pizza and drinking beer for 30 years will not simply turn it off from one day to the next. But why not? Then you have to look at the function of the behavior. In this case, eating satisfies deeper motives and needs. Food is delicious and tasty too. Why should you take that away? Why do many people go on a diet? Because they don't feel beautiful. But why don't they feel beautiful? Or they feel alone and want to compensate with external beauty. Eating also helps against frustration and stress. Now you have to ask yourself why you are stressed and frustrated. And when you break down goals, you often notice that there are inner motives and needs behind external goals. I want to have a career because I want to earn more money. The reason for this is that I feel financial insecurity. Why is that? Because I can't handle money. But why can't I handle money? I may be addicted or have other unusual or unnecessary expenses. It is therefore important that one approaches the meaning. Why do I want something? Why do I want to do this? Then you can teach yourself a new behavior. Most people who are successful achieve their goals on the side because they have their projects. They do something they are passionate about and find easy to do. You stand behind it. A child who is learning to walk does not say, "I must have covered ten meters in nine seconds by 12/31". It falls down, gets up again, falls down, gets up again until it has learned to walk.

Suppose someone wants to start exercising in the new year. So far, however, the bastard has always won. How do you think this person should approach the project?

The inner bastard does exactly what he taught himself. Actually, exercising is just a behavior. The athlete has "Move" in his head, the non-athlete has in his head "It's exhausting". But if you condition the behavior and do it for 21 days, you will enjoy it. Under no circumstances should you train a lot, hard and for a long time. First of all, you should associate something positive with sport in your head. Then you shouldn't force yourself to exercise, but put your sports bag in front of your front door every day, for example. At some point you get the thought: "Wouldn't it be nice if I used it sometime". If you want to go running, you can just go for a ten-minute walk every day. It's about wanting. There is initial resistance and over time it gets better and you can continue to improve.

Is it possible that one sometimes unconsciously boycotts one's wishes? How can one solve it?

I like working with a target compass. It has three compass needles: a destination compass needle, a path compass needle, and a purpose compass needle. Suppose the goal is to find a new partner. The way would be to change from date to date. But if that doesn't work, you have to look at the meaning and ask yourself why it doesn't work. What function does a relationship fulfill for you? You feel alone or you don't love yourself properly or you haven't processed your relationship with your ex-partner yet and have a commitment problem. You have to start with the sense compass needle. What are you really about? Are you about togetherness, sex or a life together? And then you should build on that sense and ask yourself what the partner should be like. Then you can go in that direction. When it comes to partnership, many make the mistake that the partner has to fill some gaps or fulfill functions that one cannot fulfill oneself. Something like that almost always goes wrong because there are deeper issues behind it.

Sometimes you want something, but at the same time you are afraid of it. How to overcome fears on the way to the goal?

Don't say, "I'll do this one day," ask yourself, "What's stopping me?". It is often the fear of something new or the fear of letting go of something familiar. When moving to a new city, it can be the fear of giving up social ties or, when planning a career, the fear of one's own incompetence. Many are afraid to indulge in passion because they may be disappointed. Everyone has experienced that. Because of negative experiences, many make the mistake of coming to terms with mediocrity. If I'm in a job I don't love or in the wrong city for five or ten years, I teach myself that this is my life. Successful and happy people want to find out what suits them best. It's not about finding the perfect job or the perfect city. This is only possible in reality and not in imagination. They go on their way and learn. Even if it goes wrong, it doesn't matter because you can get up and move on. Someone who always achieves their goals has a different program running. The fear of failure is not an issue, but rather the fear of stagnation. He definitely doesn't want it to stay like this forever.

Sometimes you lose motivation because of negative experiences from the past. How can you increase it?

We humans don't want to repeat disappointments. Anyone who has been disappointed in love can also think differently about the matter. For example, you can say to yourself: "I have the ability for love and intense bonding within me. I don't have the right partner yet, but how nice would it be if I found one? There are currently 82 million Germans walking around out there. There has to be but someone has to be there for me. It's unlikely that nobody will suit you." It's not about not being disappointed. You don't play a game not to lose, but to win. But in the long run, winning always involves losing. A child learns to walk by falling. If you understand that you are practicing, then again it is not about the goal but about teaching yourself the process of learning.

Sometimes you're eager to do something, but then an unforeseen event comes up, like a breakup or losing a job. How do you manage to find new strength to keep going?

A classic is: "I want to quit smoking". Quitting smoking is easy. Throw away butts and quit. Then comes a disappointment and you light a cigarette because for decades you always smoked a cigarette when you were disappointed. Then you are disappointed in yourself. But you can fall. It's like a behavioral groove. You have to create a new one. You can whine and find it bad. We've all learned complicated things. Learning to drive is an automatism and you have to keep repeating it until it's deep inside. So the goal is not to learn to drive a car, but to teach yourself the automatisms. And making the decision that you want to be able to do something and that goes beyond the level of meaning.

How do you find your true desires and goals?

This is a reflection process. One should always ask oneself: does it come from outside or is it something that fulfills me? What would you do if you knew it would definitely work? What would you do if you weren't afraid? What would you do if you knew you could? Then a lot of people say that they would actually do something completely different. You have to ask yourself why you aren't doing it. Often we get into conditioning. At work you have to work through your routines, you surround yourself with the same people every day and they all tell you the same thing. We start the game from childhood. The successful, happy people who achieve their goals are individualists. They have a deep inner drive and free themselves from these entanglements. They ask themselves, "What fulfills me? What aligns with my values ​​and talents?" Many people have huge talents but suppress them in the workplace and only live them out on weekends or after work. Why don't they turn these talents into a life's work?

Many people fear what their colleagues, friends or family will think when they do what they want. How do you get over fear?

The steps you intend to take don't have to be understandable to everyone. You often think that the others think so much about you, but they are busy with themselves. We all think about ourselves from morning to night. Even if someone finds what you're doing funny, it doesn't matter. You have to make yourself independent of others and learn to say no. People who achieve their goals even against the opposition of others have all passed the path. Often the obstacles in life show how much you want something. The people who overcome multiple obstacles to get somewhere are the ones who really want it. If you fail at the first resistance and give up, then you don't really want it yet. You can say to yourself: Of course I'll be a singer, a mother, I'll find my dream partner and of course I'll do sports regularly. It can't be that I let my life be messed up by a bit of temporary disinclination. It's not about becoming the big star or the big journalist. It's about whether I really love what I do. If I love what I do, then defeat doesn't matter. It is always an opportunity to learn.

So many people live from goal to goal. How to have more fun along the way?

Many people make the mistake of over-planning their lives and not seeing the opportunities that are emerging left and right. Most who live from within are very flexible. They see a new opportunity and don't need this hesitation from goal to goal. Those who use goals to define their success don't allow themselves to enjoy the path they take along the way. That takes away the motivation in the long run. Goals are great when they suit you. So you have to ask yourself if it really suits you. Do I really want this? Then I don't need external goals, because most goals are along the way and not somewhere at the end. The dream partner can suddenly meet you on the train or at a party because you have made your way. A good idea comes in the bath, on a walk or on the train, but not in a meeting.

Can wishes also be "too big"?

You're welcome to think big when you're doing something that really suits you. If you want to win the Pulitzer Prize as a journalist, that can be a great motivation. But be careful: If you are unsure or have other goals such as becoming a mother, a partnership, a great social life, etc., then these can also be small goals. Many feel overwhelmed by big goals. When a company announces big goals, half always feel overwhelmed because, for example, they like to sell, but don't necessarily want to meet any numbers. I don't ski to win the World Cup either, I ski because I love it. I don't need big goals. I used to want to run a marathon, but I was always tired from training, so I let that go. I'm all about exercise in the fresh air and suddenly the pressure was gone. Many big goals don't work. But if someone has found their passion, then the goal can be really big.

with dr Stefan Frädrich spoke to Isabel Michael