Are you making common mistakes when setting goals? Falling into the same traps we have fallen into? If you are doing these mistakes you run a big risk of both losing your energy and your motivation as well as completely missing to reach your targets.
This was a spontaneous episode. We had such interesting conversations when we started planning our goals that we just decided to turn on the microphones and record the dialogue. We feel it became one of your best episodes yet.
One thing that it’s rarely spoken about is the importance of enjoying the goals. How much are you following your goals vs. following your inspiration? How likely is it that you kill your inspiration with your goals?
How can you set your goals to make sure you build great habits? How can you set your goals to make sure they give you energy instead of taking it?
Our goal with this episode is for you to set the right goals for 2020, make sure you can reach them and that you enjoy the ride of getting there as well.
[00:00:01] Have you set your goals for 2020 yet? Have you maybe even written them down on a piece of paper? Why? Are you even setting goals? I’m here with Erik Bergman, a serial entrepreneur, a good friend of mine, the founder of great dot com, a company that will give away 100 percent of its profits to charity, and a person that I’ve made over 50 million euros in the affiliation space before turning 30. Erik, how are you today?
[00:00:42] I’m very well, thank you very much. I’m feeling calm and centered and excited about talking about goals. And I’m here with email. My good old friend. A personal development junkie who wants to come up with systems and understand systems for everything. Which makes it really interesting to discuss goals with him. And he is the host of this podcast and he was also the first person joining me into the project of Great. I’m really excited.
[00:01:14] I am excited. You are excited. And together we are doing that becoming great podcast, a podcast, which purpose is to give inspiration, help and tips to anyone who wants to make the world a better place somehow through entrepreneurship? And in this podcast, we’re doing different kinds of episodes for different kinds. One type of episode that we’re doing is about our organization. Great. One type of episode. We’re doing our personal development episodes like this one and we will talk about life hacks and anything that would help you through your business. One type of episodes are business episodes where we talk purely about entrepreneurship and business. And finally, the last pillar is episodes about Erik Berman, his fast right. That’s him. And his journey towards becoming adding another super to the words super entrepreneur. Super, super.
[00:02:23] Yeah, I’ll go in. Super duper entrepreneur. But that’s just because I’m humble.
[00:02:26] Some words for it, too. But after the soup up, that creativity that gets you there.
[00:02:33] Yeah, that’s that’s why I mean, you know, and superduper mean.
[00:02:38] Why do. Erik, why did we feel like doing an episode about goal setting?
[00:02:44] Ok. So we were supposed to sit down and plan our goals for two thousand and twenty and we started discussing this. And after a while, we started questioning if we even wanted goals, if goals were something that’s even good or if it’s bad. And after sketching up this episode, we constantly found ourselves saying, Oh, no, don’t tell me that now. Say that in the podcast is that I want to be curious about your perspective. And afterwards, like, okay, why don’t we just turn on the microphones right now instead of planning this episode and see where this conversation takes us. So we actually have no idea what we’re going to talk about. Well, at least not what are you going to say? But instead just explore is goals a good or a bad thing? What goals do we have? Or no time for 2020? And what goals have we had in the past? And when has it helped us and when has it not?
[00:03:41] One topic I found very interesting that we started to scratch the surface on is how much do you want to set goals and then really follow them? Strictly worse is how much do you want to follow your inspiration, your excitement? How what is your perspective on that, Erik? How much is goals versus inspiration and the ways you run your life?
[00:04:06] I like that question. I think it’s I think it’s really easy to. Gets stuck on a goal.
[00:04:14] So one of the questions you asked in the interview was why are we setting goals? And to me, that is because we want to get to a certain place or reach a certain target, whatever. But it’s often that we don’t necessarily think it all through. Why do we want to get to that specific thing? What what does that mean? And what is that one? One thing that comes to mind was in two thousand and fifteen. Maybe I set the goal for myself that I wanted to work out every day for a year. And looking back at this, the reason why I wanted to do that was that a I wanted to look really good and B, I wanted to be able to say to people that I had worked out every year for every day for a year. And halfway through this year, I was having nightmares of forgetting to work out because I had pushed myself so hard. Up until now that if I would miss one day, everything would be lost. I wouldn’t be able to tell people about this, and I could wake up sweating because I dream that I had forgotten to work out, which just shows me how off that goal was for inspiration.
[00:05:27] It wasn’t a goal driven by this is something I really want to do. It really important for me or my soul. It was just important for my my ego in a sense. And I ended up reaching this goal after a year. And then I hated to work out. So I basically didn’t work out for two years after this because I had abused my own body by working out. And I really, really didn’t want to in ways I just really didn’t want to do. So I set a goal without really thinking, why do I care about this? Why is this important and what does this really mean? And then I kind of tricked myself, pushed myself so hard to reach this goal for no real good reason. And I gave it all and I didn’t even think about inspiration or critiqued creativity. I didn’t follow at all. What do I want today? What does my body want? What is my body telling me? And I can just see how that’s at least for me, one of the big risks of setting a goal that is not really thought through and where I’m completely losing out on inspiration and creativity, creativity and just feeling in to what do I want.
[00:06:35] So and at the same time, I guess after that year, there was some sense of accomplishment and proudness.
[00:06:45] Mm hmm.
[00:06:46] Definitely. There was a feeling of accomplishment and proudness and just looking at it from from now from the lens of four years later or whatever is three years later. I feel there was definitely benefits from it. There was accomplishment, there was proudness.
[00:07:06] But when I look at the price that I paid for it in terms of not working out for two years afterwards, feeling stressed that entire year that I would miss a training session, feeling like I really hated to work out sometimes I just went out running in the rain when was cold, even though I really, really didn’t want to simply because I wanted to reach a goal. And when I look at the pros and the cons, I believe that I paid a much higher price than it was worth at the end of the day.
[00:07:36] So is there a way you could have set that goal in a more healthy way? So, for example, if your goal was to do, let’s simplify it and say that your goal was to do 100 pushups every day, could you have set a lower goal for the days where you felt off like some?
[00:07:56] I had to do a minimum of 10 pushups each day and that made it bearable, even though you weren’t on your best.
[00:08:06] If I were to set the same kind of goal today, I would set the goal in a way where my goal would be how can I love working out when this year is over rather than set a specific number of a specific thing.
[00:08:24] So I really like that.
[00:08:26] So the goal is to come up with a way to love to work out, because that means to find a habit that I enjoy. So if I would have set the goal instead, OK, at the moment, I don’t enjoy working out. I need to push myself through a goal to start working out. But if the goal would be OK, I want to love working out after a year. What could I do then? OK, I’m going gonna write down a list with 30 different ways of working out and this year I’m gonna try them all. When I’m in a good mood for it or whatever, I’m not going to push myself to do it if I’m suffering. But I’m going to try these 30 things. I’m gonna give them a serious try. At least do have each and every one of them. Let’s say for three hours to really know, do I enjoy motocross? Do I enjoy swimming? Do I enjoy running on joy? Football. Do enjoy climbing. Whatever it might be.
[00:09:15] And the goal would be, how can I find something I feel passionate about as feel like this is a very important concept here to have the goal to not needing a goal. Cause if you really like something I don’t need. Right. If you realize something, you don’t need to have those outer. Rules imposed on you, and I think that is very key because when we do something we enjoy, we don’t need to use any willpower. It just comes natural. And I believe that every person has different amounts of willpower, of course, but everyone has X units of willpower and those are out. We are not going to perform anymore. I’m gonna make shitty decisions. So if you are maybe listening to this as a young, busy entrepreneur, if you have to spend a ton of willpower on your exercise routine, then that is willpower. That is not. Available in your business to do the hard things there.
[00:10:18] So what else could this be applied to that? What goals do you have for yourself in 2020?
[00:10:25] I like where we’re going here, so. I going to switch to question back to you because we talked previously about that. Your goal on Instagram. And you said your goal on Instagram is 400000 followers. And then we said, well, I can’t fully control if I’m gonna get four hundred thousand followers worse. So instead I said my goal is to post 365 short videos, turning 65 quotes and three hundred and sixty five valuable posts. So maybe the goal you should have could be how can I find a way to enjoy making this amount of posts?
[00:11:08] Is it to sum that up a little bit? My first goal was and that came out of nowhere. It once again, I think I can see this is definitely a danger with me. This is how I got there. I’m going to work out for 365 days in a row. Goal. It was just an idea that I grabbed out of thin air. Then I started saying, I’m gonna do this. And then I felt that, okay, now I’ve identified my ego with this, so I’m gonna do it. And the same thing happened with Instagram. I had 4000 followers in October and I told myself, hey, I’m gonna hundredfold this in one year. I’m going to four hundred thousand followers by October. By four hundred thousand, you may ask. It just was a good number out of nowhere. How am I gonna feel when I reached Atco? I have no idea. So that’s probably one of the interesting things with goals than that, at least for me. I can grab them out of nothing. And then I start identifying with them and I might chase them a lot for no other reason than, I don’t know, pride or identity and. At the moment, I feel passionately about Instagram, I really enjoy what I’m doing. So in a way, it feels easy to set the goal post 365 videos, quotes and valuable posts over here right now. So maybe it should come with a caveat like extra fine print that and enjoy this. If I don’t enjoy it, then it’s worth doing it. And probably the enjoyment should come first. So on.
[00:12:39] My first goal is to keep loving producing content for Instagram, keep enjoying that process, and as long as that goal is filled, I could turn that into subgoals of posting these 365 pulses each category and then hopefully that will bring the 400000 followers.
[00:12:57] Yeah, and when you describe it like this, I see. A bit of danger with setting a goal like that, because I think especially creative endeavors comes so easy when inspiration is there, at least for me, if I’m recording a YouTube video. It could take two week 2 a.m. Video if I’m not in-flow, but if I feel inspiration, I could probably do that in a day. And I know that you are the same. So let’s say that you have this goal to post three posts every day on Instagram and in three months time you get super excited to do some other. You want to do a TV show? Yeah, I’m making that up. And you feel so inspired to do that. And it’s gonna be so easy for you because you have the inspiration out idea. So, yes, coming. But then it’s like, oh, no, I can’t spend too much time on the TV show because I have set the goal of Instagram.
[00:13:54] Yes, I can totally see that. Especially when you said when I said that Longo’s as one year, that I have no idea how I’m going to feel about Instagram three months from now, six months from now, that I can really see that. OK, stop messing up what I actually want to do simply because I pulled this number of 400000 out of thin air in two.
[00:14:18] So what is the purpose of a golden goose? What I want is outcome in the end. And enjoy the process to get an outcome.
[00:14:29] So I believe a gold can be. I think it depends a lot about who you are and what kind of position you’re in. And if you feel this is something I really want to do, I believe it’s really good for me. And I find myself watching Netflix all the time instead of doing this or I find myself getting drunk every weekend instead of doing this. If it’s hard to stay away from the short term decisions like. I’ve read something quite recently about how first, second and third degree of consequences. I’m not sure if you and I spoke about this, but basically if you’re eating a salad, your first consequence is the taste of salad and you might not like it.
[00:15:22] But the second consequence is hopefully that you are feeling better that day than if you would have eaten chips. And the third grade of consequences is that you become a healthier person over time. And it’s the opposite way. If you’re going to McDonald’s, you probably really like that. Taste to the first consequence is really pleasurable taste in your mouth and a very pleasurable feeling. Second consequence is that you have lower energy that day than if you would have eaten salad probably or feeling heavier. And the third degree is that you might get liver disease or whatever. Instead of living a long, healthy life.
[00:15:59] Kind of. And.
[00:16:02] If you find yourself getting stuck, making decisions for the first degree of consequences, let’s say you enjoy watching Netflix instead of reading a book. I think goals can be a really good way of finding the discipline or motivation to do this. Let’s say I want to I want to read 20 books 2020 because I really feel that I want to get away from my current job or my situation or I want to learn this topic, but I find myself watching Netflix instead.
[00:16:32] Then I believe a gold can be a really good thing to get there because.
[00:16:40] It’s easy to see why this is good for us and it’s easy to see why binge watching Netflix and just getting caught up in those TV shows are not.
[00:16:52] However, if you were a person that loved to read and you would read either way and you just set to go, I’m gonna read a lot of books about math. And then halfway through the year, you don’t want to read books about math anymore. You want to read about philosophy, but you promised yourself to read with math. Maybe in that situation it doesn’t make sense.
[00:17:12] So. Goals become more and more useful the more you want to. In parliament, a habit that is not natural for you. That is difficult. Yeah, and more can be more or more in the way of your inspiration. The more it’s something that you do naturally.
[00:17:32] Yeah, I think I think that’s a very valuable way of looking at this.
[00:17:38] So to tieback what we talked about before. How can someone find enjoyment in postponing gratification?
[00:17:48] Let’s put a little pin in that one, because I like to get back to the gold about breathing, because now I feel at the same time if we look at my training goal at a better workout, goals will be how can I love working out at the end of this year? Maybe that read 20 books in 2020 is a pretty shitty goal as well. Maybe a better goal would be. How can I? I want to start loving to read in 2020. So maybe a better goal would be there. Okay. I’m gonna try ten different kinds of books. I’m gonna read them for as long. I’m going to read em at least for half an hour, an hour, whatever to see. Do I enjoy this topic and make 20/20 about I want to start loving to read and make twenty twenty one about reading those twenty books done or something like that. Which ones again ties into what you said. Postponing gratification isn’t quite the right word. Yeah. Doesn’t matter. Right. Gratification. Yeah. So basically maybe it’s about once again it’s a tricky goal that we would push ourselves instead of finding how can I love reading. Maybe the best way to start loving reading is I’m gonna read a Donald Duck magazine everyday just to get into the habit of reading and. And I think that’s an important thing, that goals can probably good to change your behavior. But there are probably better goals to set that I’m gonna do this, which I know that I really don’t want to do. I need to push myself forward instead of finding the middle ground. I want to find a way of loving doing this.
[00:19:21] Yeah. And especially, I think if you’re starting out with something new like reading books, I would much rather set up goals, something like for three hours every Thursday than I will make space in my calendar. So I have time to read rather than saying I would read 20 books. Kirsten, your experience of reading would be how can I finish this book instead of how can I enjoy it like that?
[00:19:47] So instead of saying I have to read in these hours, it’s like I I want to have space to read if I want to.
[00:19:56] Yes. So, for example, I recently started a YouTube channel. And in the beginning, I said I would post one video every week. And then I found myself, OK, I’m creating this video because I want to finish it. Not because I want to enjoy the process. And I wanted this to be a passion project where I can have a creative outlet that I enjoy. So instead, I said, now that’s a good way to ruin the fun here. Instead, I’m going to say, OK, I’m going to block of time in my calendar. So I have have X amount of hours that I can spend on this passion project.
[00:20:27] I like that. And then if you want to do it that time, you can. And if you don’t want to do it, you don’t do it.
[00:20:34] Exactly. And then I go in to creating the videos with more creative mindset. OK, if I want to play around in première for two hours, finding a cool transition, that’s fine. And premiere is the software, right? It’s the software. Right. And if I want to play around with a color filter for X hours, I do that. That’s fine. If I want to take a little silly long time to write a script about something, I’m excited, but that’s fine. I let it take time because I want to enjoy the process.
[00:21:09] Yeah. So once again, if we take this back to book analogy, it’s like OK, for three hours every week, I want to enjoy something that has to do with reading. It doesn’t need finishing 20 bam.
[00:21:21] But Felts, I got shivers in my body like that.
[00:21:25] This reminds me of something that I learned about relationships that if you want to improve your sex life, it’s common that people go to the to the idea of, OK. Every Saturday we should have a date and we should have sex kind of, which is a really shitty way of improving your sex life while a much better way is OK. Every Saturday night we block for hours together and if we want to have sex, we have sex. But at least we spend that time together and focusing on each other. And if that’s going to the movies, having a dinner, cooking together, it doesn’t really matter.
[00:22:04] But it’s the same idea that, OK. Our goal, if we want to put a goal into a relationship here, could be every Saturday for this. For 2020, we want to spend four hours together doing anything.
[00:22:19] I really liked this conversation is going, which is how to set goals to enjoy the process of what you’re doing more. Yeah. And I think that is so key because what is the goal of your whole life? I would invite every listener to ask that question.
[00:22:36] What is the goal with your life? A hysterical with your life.
[00:22:42] To me, the two to. To journalist point, how can you enjoy that journey?
[00:22:54] I like the idea of having another episode when we talk about goals for a company, then we don’t need to open that loop right now. But I just like the perspective because that’s gonna be different because then there are more people involved and might be different ways of thinking and goals might be more necessary. I don’t know. I just like. I’m gonna enjoy exploring that, that topic.
[00:23:15] I would actually like to do more research. I would like to do research with you. Actually, if you’re up for it before we do that episode, we’ll see where we end up.
[00:23:27] So I’m I’m happy with starting to wrap up this episode now, but before I do, I would like to ask what are some things that maybe even not even call them goal, but what are some things you would like to accomplish and spend your time on? What are you passionate about in 2020? Because we’re starting a new year here.
[00:23:53] I’m really looking forward to doing more social media stuff. I’m really looking forward to create content in various finding ways that I enjoy to create content for for YouTube and more for the podcast and doing video content for the podcast and a lot of things around creating content.
[00:24:16] To be honest, I think what I look forward the most to is building a system behind it that can scale the content production. I think I enjoy the systems more than she calls me a system guy. I didn’t say that I wasn’t the system.
[00:24:30] Why are we getting along? No, I.
[00:24:34] I look forward for that. I don’t have specific. I want to make great at least breaking even next year. So we make money and I don’t need to think about that. But that’s for. We’re gonna have a goal episode about great some. But that’s a big person personal goal of mine as well. And. I want to get going with building a house, which is a big personal goal with a big side. I’m not sure I want to enjoy life. I want to feel that. Next year is even better than this year and this has been a great year. I want to feel very healthy and I feel very healthy, but I like to keep on that trajectory, like that direction. I feel that my my relationship with yohanna is better than ever and I want to keep building on that. And I want to enjoy what we’re doing. Yeah. I don’t have that many goals. I want to keep living life as I do.
[00:25:31] And keep enjoying it. Yeah. What’s your what do you want to do? 2020 similar.
[00:25:43] It’s it sounds like you’re very happy now and do that. You want to be happier. The same things moving forward. I feel like that in a very similar way. I enjoy almost everything I do. Most of the time I’m surrounded by things that gives me happiness and satisfaction. And I just wanna keep adding more of myself into that and just keep enjoying what I do. More and more and more to be a little bit more specific. Next year in Great to be releasing a new podcast called the Great Charities Podcast.
[00:26:17] And in there we are going to interview a lot of different charity organizations. So I’m gonna be a professional full time podcast host and great, which is so much fun because I’m going to be talking with a lot of interesting people running different passion projects that has the purpose to make the world better. So I’m really gonna get an opportunity to up my game as a host and I want to be even clearer, more super expressive and be more precise in the way that I ask questions and. Outside of that, I’m also just recently launched my own due to channel that is my passion project and. Something that lights my soul on fire is to see especially other men that are having issues in relationships or health or communication and topics that I’m interested in and being able to inspire and uplift them. So that is the purpose of that YouTube channel. And also, I want to start taking on clients as a life coach. And that I think will really, really, really bring me a lot of joy. Next year I started doing it a little bit and I it just fire inside me when I can interact with people in that way. So I am so excited by 2020. I already know unless something absurd happened, but it’s going to be the best year of my life.
[00:27:53] I’m excited to hear it.
[00:27:53] I know it’s one thing I like to touch upon, there was humor into Sweden, so we’re going to move more, be closer to each other.
[00:28:03] And that’s that’s at least the plan to me. Me and Johanna, we have this word. I think it’s come from her family, actually, or her family talking about us. They say that we are really good at all. The best damar else, which would translate. It’s not a real word in Swedish either, but it would translate to re make up our mind, kind of. So we made up her mind, were basically made a decision and then we made a read this issue. So we’ll see. But the other plan is will be moved to Sweden. And I’m excited about that. I’m excited to hang up with you. I’m excited to be part of that journey. And I’d like to touch on one thing before we wrap this up. So we landed on goals can be good and probably goals are better than no goals in a lot of ways. For a lot of people. But I think if you’re setting goals, then some things are important to keep in mind here. I think a good way is to set the goal. Asking yourself, how can I enjoy this by the end of the process rather than how can I reached his goal? So rather how can I in love? How can I find a way to love working out rather than how can I work out 365 days in a row? And I spoke to a woman a couple of days back who wanted to.
[00:29:26] She wanted to increase the revenues of her company. It’s like, okay, I’ve set this goal that I want to reach one million dollars in revenues or whatever it was. And. It’s the same thing here that we touched upon. I want to reach four hundred thousand followers. I can’t really impact the number of followers. There is a lot of external factors and she can’t really impact the numbers of revenues because they can happen a lot of things. She was running a restaurant and for example, let’s say they start building something right after her outside of a restaurant. She can’t impact that. So she she can’t control this goal. And then I think it’s much better to break this down in goals that you can have an impact on. That’s why I said I want to make 365 videos or 365 posts like this because that’s in my control.
[00:30:13] The number of followers necessarily isn’t in my control. So if you’re setting goals, start by asking yourself, how can I enjoy this process and how can I set a goal that I enjoy and then set the goals that you can actually reach.
[00:30:28] So if your goal is to love, to learn, love to start reading, for example, in one year, that’s gonna be a tricky goal to reach because you can’t really say I’m gonna love reading, but if you do what Emma touched upon, set aside three hours every week, for example, to practice loving reading, to test different things, then that’s a goal you can actually reach. So if there’s been a year and you have spent three hours every week practicing to love reading, you have reached your goal. And hopefully the effect of that will be that you have started to love reading. But the goal in itself was something that you actually could control. Setting aside three hours every week, that’s completely in your power. But whether or not you’re going to love something at the end of that time, you can’t actually control. Does this make sense?
[00:31:22] Yeah, I think that’s summarized it very well.
[00:31:24] Yeah. So the same thing then goes for for this woman who wanted to increase her revenues. If she sets the goal, I’m gonna call and 30 different companies trying to get them to do a sponsorship. She had she wanted to do catering for company. She wants to start doing that. So if she set the goal of every week, I want to call 30 companies, that’s a goal she can completely control. But she can’t control whether or not they will buy this much or do this. And maybe she can set the goal. Set the goal. I’m gonna call 30 companies each week and I’m gonna spend one hour each week reflecting on how did those calls go? Go. What could have done better? That’s a goal that is completely in our power. And hopefully calling 30 companies every week for one year will help her to improve their revenues to $1 million. But she can actually say, I manage to do what I set out to do and knowing whether she did or didn’t do that. And hopefully she can set the goal. I want to find a way of enjoying calling these companies as well. And I want to find joy in that. I want to do this together with someone who wants to do that and have the joy element in there to make it easy. But either way, even if she don’t enjoy this, because maybe she has to increase the revenues because otherwise she goes bankrupt or whatever. There are situations where joy isn’t the most important factor, but at least that will be a goal that is fully in her control rather than just increasing the revenues.
[00:33:01] I was crystal clear. Oh, so what can someone do if they want to support our cause and what we’re doing here?
[00:33:08] So we have a goal? No, we don’t actually have a goal. What we want to reach more and more people with his podcast and this podcast is a family site interjection for people who want to make the world a better place through entrepreneurship. We want to build a community around that purpose because we believe that that’s a way to improve the world and to support our cause. If you start subscribing to our podcast and whatever podcast app that you’re using, you greatly increase our chances of getting into these different top lists. I used to think that the top lists were about the most people listening to the podcast, but it’s actually about which podcast have the highest percent of subscribers and we could be a podcast with the highest number of subscribers. We cannot compete with Joe Rogan on highest numbers of listeners, but we can be a podcast with highest number of subscribers. So please, I just wanted to do that. Click subscribe on this podcast on the Becoming Great and we will love two more episodes.
[00:34:12] We do and we wish you joyful goals in 2020.
[00:34:17] Joyful goals, a joyful life. Thank you for listening. And Happy New Year. We’ll see you next week. See you.