Setting obnoxiously high goals (and why that’s good)

By Liv Steigrad 2 July 2019 2 min read

Aim for the moon. Even if you fail, you’ll land amongst the stars.

It sounds pretty. But is it really something you should live by? As it turns out, some people would say yes. The rationale being if you aim big, you therefore plan for big, prepare for big and commit to big. And even if things don’t quite work out the way you planned, you might just end up in a better situation than if you’d planned small and achieved your goal.

Let’s say your obnoxiously high goal is to retire at 45 with five investment properties to your name. Even if that doesn’t happen, the fact that you were shooting high could mean that at age 45, you might be, say, retired with your own home and one investment property.

Or you might have all five properties and not be retired.

Or something completely different.

The point is that having an endgame in mind from early on means you will likely approach every day differently. You think big. You play big.

So, what are some of the other benefits of setting obnoxiously high goals?

Break away from your beliefs

Allowing yourself to dream big — like, really big — can give you a valuable shift in perspective. If you take the time to actively break down your limiting beliefs, you might start to see how many more options you actually have in life.

A common example of this in Australian cities is the expectation to go to uni, get a salaried job, and have a family. Stop assuming that path is the only one. Dream first, then sit down and work out how you could make it happen.

Get excited

When you decide to step away from “normal” and pursue your big, huge, crazy dream, you’ll probably find yourself excited. Really excited. Because you’re actively taking steps to build the life you want. Never underestimate the power of the deep, intrinsic motivation that comes from working towards something you truly want and believe in.

Learn and adapt, fast

If you’re throwing yourself in the deep end, chances are whatever learning curve you’ve found yourself on is steep. Sure, you could have aimed lower and made it easier on yourself. But placing yourself in challenging situations may force you to learn and adapt quickly. It may get you to tap into your creativity to solve issues in ways you otherwise wouldn’t have to.

Build your resilience

While aiming high can help you fly past some roadblocks, there will also be setbacks which totally knock you down. When your goals are big, you may be more likely to foster the mindset of a marathon runner rather than a sprinter. You know there will be setbacks along the way. You’re mentally prepared. Picking yourself up and carrying on will help you build up your resilience.

Land amongst the stars

As mentioned in the intro, if you shoot high and don’t quite make it, your “I almost made it” may still look better than someone else’s “I made it.”

Words by
Liv Steigrad Right Chevron

Liv Steigrad is a creative copywriter with a background in psychology. She specialises in cheeky web copy, and can drink an espresso and go straight to sleep.

Setting obnoxiously high goals (and why that’s good)