3 Reasons Why You Should Promise Yourself You Won’t Set Goals

“Goals” are like “New Year’s resolutions”…frequently made but rarely accomplished

If you struggle to achieve your goals, my good friend Bill Bartmann, the author of “Bailout Riches” and once named by Inc. magazine as “The Billionaire Nobody Knows” gave me an awesome tip to trick your mind into accomplishing exactly what you want to, every single time.

“Don’t think of your goals as goals.”

Are you scratching your head right now?  I know I sure was. Until I saw the white elephant sitting in the room…

In our society most people describe a goal as “a lofty ambition,” something to “shoot for,” something to “strive for,” or something to “work towards”…

Nothing wrong with with any of that is there?

As long as you don’t care about your goal that much, it’s perfectly fine…

You see the descriptions we give the the word “goal”  implies your objective will be difficult to achieve. There is a subtle undertone crafted by the implicit meaning of your words telling you it’s just as likely you won’t achieve your ultimate goal, as it is that you will make it happen.

Too often this gives you an excuse making it okay (or at least forgivable) if you fail meaning the word “goal” by popular definition actually conditions you for failure.


Here’s how it works.

You start out “shooting for a goal,” wanting to hit it, but you also know by the sheer definition of the word it probably isn’t going to happen. Unfortunately opening this door to the possibility it might not be achieved, works against you, weakening your power to manifest the “impossible”.

But that’s not the worst part…

Even if you hit your goals 90 percent or more of the time (which would be incredible), you’d still be failing 10{54c12dad2cc2b53ae830e39915b1a3e70288dbcbbeb8bbf8395437c5dc3c512c} of the time, right?


(By the way if you said a number anywhere near this high, you are one extraordinary human being, and you shouldn’t be reading this blog post, you should writeabestsellingbookwithme).


Even if you gave a more realistic reply, you’d only probably say you hit your goals 60-70{54c12dad2cc2b53ae830e39915b1a3e70288dbcbbeb8bbf8395437c5dc3c512c} of the time, which means you’re failing 30-40{54c12dad2cc2b53ae830e39915b1a3e70288dbcbbeb8bbf8395437c5dc3c512c} of the time!

How confident of success or how much momentum do you think you can give when you’re “trying” to do something you’ve previously failed at a rate of 30 – 40{54c12dad2cc2b53ae830e39915b1a3e70288dbcbbeb8bbf8395437c5dc3c512c} of the time?

Not very.

But what is the success rate for keeping a promise when you “promise” to do something?

I bet it’s a higher percentage than the “goals” you’ve set to achieve because promises are protected by your morals, beliefs and overall value system.  Even at a subconscious level, this system to honor promises makes them much more important in our minds than a goal for three basic reasons.

Three very distinct reasons why a promise means more to YOU than a goal:

#1 A Promise Has Emotional Attachment

A promise carries a much deeper sense of responsibility to the person to whom it is made—whether to yourself or someone else. With these feelings, a promise also carries a higher emotional attachment.

When you make a promise, your emotions are involved. Because of the emotional attachment, the file clerk in our mind will now give this promise an immediate priority filing in the filing cabinet.

2. A Promise Has A History Of Success

Our mind recognizes that you have a history of success when it comes to making promises. It knows you’ve historically achieved an exceptionally high success rate of nearly 100 percent in many cases and strives to maintain this momentum.

Based on this history your subconscious assumes you can and will keep this promise. Rather than being preconditioned for failure based on past performance, your mind is preconditioned for success because it knows it’s more than capable of keeping a promise.

These prior successes carry a positive emotional attachment from how it felt when you did what you promised you were going to do. Your file clerk recorded this data in your file cabinet as a positive emotional reaction, working hard to keep your promises so you can feel “good”.

3. A Promise Triggers Your Subconscious Mind To Set You Up For Success


By limiting your level of achievement to just Goal setting you are turning your subconscious into an “overprotective parent”.  A parent who is contstantly attempting to talk you out of taking any risk, for fear you might fail.

It actually works against your goals convincing you that you don’t have time for lofty dreams, quietly making it ok to “forget” about them.

But when you set a promise, the opposite happens.

Your subconscious mind switches from the role of “overprotective parent”, attempting to talk you out of your goal to the role of “helpful parent” who is going to clear the path and make it easy to achieve success!

Think of the difference between setting a “goal” to quit smoking and “promising” someone you love you’ll quit smoking.

If you’ve set a “goal” to quit smoking, it’s of little consequence to anyone but yourself you failed to achieve this “goal.” However, if you have “promised” someone you love you were going to quit and then later resumed smoking, you’d be afraid or embarrassed to admit you failed to keep your promise to your loved one, wouldn’t you?



Failing to keep a promise leads to an emotional reaction of shame, embarrassment, or disappointment. Your subconscious mind avoids these feelings of failure or suffering at all costs because its job is to keep you from suffering any of those things.

In fact, its sole purpose is self-preservation.


This subconscious need for “self-survival” is exactly what forces it to helps you keep your promise like a “helpful parent”. The part of you feeling almost as if you’ll die if you don’t keep your word is comforted as you move towards keeping your promise.

By changing the way you think about the process, you’ve just increased your likelihood of success by a huge margin. You’ll still have some work to do, but now you’re positioned for success. And most importantly we now you have an easy way get your subconscious work for you, not against you.

If you are ready to change your goals into promises, take the first step by leaving a comment and making a public commitment to yourself – TODAY, first list a goal you have now and then change it into a promise.  How did that feel?






GregS. Reid is a #1 best-selling author, entrepreneur, and the CEO of several successful corporations, who has dedicated his life to helping others achieve the ultimate fulfillment of finding and living a life of purpose. Greg will personally share with you everything he knows about how to have a life of Sustained Abundance and Financial Freedom by discovering Your Personal Success Equation as you’ll learn in his program ThePathwaysToGreatness.





Erin shows overscheduled, overwhelmed women how to do less so that they can achieve more. Traditional productivity books—written by men—barely touch the tangle of cultural pressures that women feel when facing down a to-do list. How to Get Sh*t Done will teach you how to zero in on the three areas of your life where you want to excel, and then it will show you how to off-load, outsource, or just stop giving a damn about the rest.

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