6 Times When You Should Give Up On a Goal

A woman sitting at a table writing on her notebook and leaning on her hand

I am a huge believer in goals and I think you should persevere when times get tough. Even if your goal is very hard to reach, I still think that you should keep going. However, there are times when you should give up on your goal.

If this made you feel defensive, that’s great! You’re serious about your goals and you don’t want to give up. You should definitely keep going.

But if you are here to know whether you should give up on your goal or not, keep reading and we’ll figure it out. Let’s go through six different reasons to let go of your old goals.

1. You’re not sure what you want

Are you absolutely sure about what you want in life? Or do you feel like the goals you have are all fine and good, but maybe not the right choice for you?

It’s completely normal to change goals when the old ones don’t feel interesting to you anymore. In case you feel like you don’t have any idea of what you want to do with your life or you’re not sure if what you’re working on right now really is right for you, don’t worry.

That’s simply a wonderful opportunity to try different things. Don’t be afraid to let go of what you have been working on if it doesn’t feel like something that is working for you anymore.

2. Your priorities or values have changed

When you’re 18 or 20, you might have a very specific idea of what kind of life you want to have and what you think is a good life. You might be very adamant about your idea of a perfect future. But as years go by, your values and priorities might change.

A lot of young people dream about fame and fortune, but once they get a few years older, they might start dreaming about having a family and living a normal, simple life instead.

Sometimes you dream about working in a certain field, but later on you realize that it simply isn’t on par with your values.

If your idea of your ideal life has changed, don’t be afraid to change your goals. The important thing is that you go towards what is right for you.

3. You found something better

Sometimes you work on a goal for years feeling certain that it is the right goal for you. But then one day, you’ll discover something even better. This could be a job you had never even heard of or a lifestyle that would simply fit you better.

Giving up on a goal you have been working on for years can feel very frustrating. It’s still better to choose a goal that you know is the best fit for you. And one of the blessings in life is to get to try many things, whether it’s different jobs, countries, or hobbies.

So if you feel like your old goal isn’t right for you anymore and you see something better on the horizon, don’t be afraid to give up on your old goal and go full speed ahead to make your new dreams come true.

4. Your goals were influenced by others

There are some common goals that almost everyone seems to have, such as buying a house, finding the partner of your dreams, and making a lot of money. These are all good goals to have, but only if that’s what you really want.

A lot of the time we ourselves don’t come up with these dreams though. Society and our friends and family can have a massive impact on what we think we want from life. That’s why it’s good to ask yourself if you maybe have been influenced by others and your dreams aren’t really your dreams.

Do you think the real reason that you think you should buy your own house is that most people your age are doing it? Do you really like the idea of being a parent, or are you planning to have kids mainly because somewhere deep inside you you feel like a woman isn’t complete without children? I know this sounds bad, but if everyone around you is starting a family, it can be hard to feel confident in making a completely different decision.

To be happy you have to know what it is that you want. If you think any of your old goals were influenced by others, let them go.

5. You don’t enjoy the journey of working on your goal

Sometimes you think something is right for you, but it really isn’t. If you have big plans for your life, of course you have to work hard and not everything can be fun. You might have to venture far into your discomfort zone.

But if the goal is right for you and you have made it achievable, you should enjoy the journey. You should be willing to do what you need to do even when things get hard and you have to work long days.

If you have a habit of complaining about even the easiest tasks related to your goal and you often find yourself procrastinating when you know you should be working on your goal, it might just be that this isn’t the right goal for you.

The idea of being a famous author might sound great, but if you don’t actually like writing any type of text, maybe that dream just isn’t for you. And that’s just fine, trust me! You’ll find something that is right for you and will make you happy.

6. Your goal is in the way of your other goals

You can have many different goals, but it’s good to keep in mind that there are only 24 hours in a day and you can’t do everything. It’s important to know what are your most important goals, the ones that you absolutely have to achieve. They are the ones you should commit fully to.

If you have any goals that are in the way of your more important goals, you’d better give up on them or at least forget about them until you have reached your other goals.

To make as much progress as possible, you need to prioritize what really matters and not waste time on anything else.

How do you know when it’s time to change a goal?

Sometimes you don’t need to give up on a goal completely. If you feel like the goal you have been working on is somewhat interesting and reaching it could be beneficial to you, but it’s not exactly what you want, you might just need to reframe your goal.

If you for example think that the profession you have chosen isn’t quite right for you after all, think about what else you could do in your field. Maybe you need a job with less responsibility or you want to have a job where you can help people more.

Give yourself time to think about what you really want and keep searching until you find it.


Do you think it’s time to give up on your old goals? Don’t forget that it’s always good to have goals and even if what you have been working on so far isn’t working for you anymore, you can always set new goals. Don’t give up on leveling up your life, one day you will be happy you kept going!

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