Achieve Goals

How to let go of goals that no longer serve you

Christina Omlor

We set goals for a variety of reasons – but some of those reasons are far better than others. Since you’ll invest a lot of time and energy in trying to achieve the goals you set, it is important to be sure that you are choosing the right things to focus on. People change over time, so your goals may change as well. There’s nothing wrong with revisiting your goals. Yet it’s crucial to learn how to let go of those goals you identify as no longer serving you. This applies as much to your career as it does to your personal life.

How to let go of goals that no longer serve you

The first  you might want to ask yourself: Is the goal you set really right for you? And if not, how can you let got of it?

A goal should be based on something you want to achieve, not the dreams or plans of someone else. If you are doing something to impress someone else you may be working towards something you don’t really value or want.  When this happens, the goal in question is often work or career related. Forcing yourself to earn more, work more hours and to focus soley on work can lead to a life that is off kilter and full of stress.

To pursue the right goals, it’s crucial to examine why you want the results – or if you want them at all. For any goal you are currently focusing on, particularly those that take up a large amount of time and focus, ask yourself the following:

  • Who is this for?
  • How will I benefit?
  • Will it make me happy in the long run?
  • Am I doing this because I truly want to or to impress someone else?
  • Is the final goal still something that matters to me and that I want to do?

The answers to these questions can yield surprising results. When you review your goals regularly, you can focus on the ones that really matter and get rid of the rest.


You do not get punished for not hitting production goals at all, you just don’t benefit either” – Anonymous Employer Review at Pacific Dental Services, LLC


Goals set that are dramatically out of reach in the time period you’ve allowed or that don’t align with your skills are not realistic and may be unreachable. While you should always aim high, understanding that some things either require more time or simply are not feasible will save you a lot of time, money and trouble. For example: If you’re a petite woman,  you’re not likely to make it to the NBA, no matter how much you practice.

Also, our interests change over time, as we develop new hobbies and passions, and an outdated goal may be one related to an old hobby you’re simply not interested in any longer. It’s ok to let that goal go and find something new to focus on.


For my own goals, I will never reach them working here” – Anonymous Employer Review at Berghoff Design Group


Why letting go isn’t failure

For many people, letting go of an unrealistic goal or one that is no longer right for you is not failing. It is reevaluating what matters so that you can focus on the things you truly need. Goals made before you achieved personal growth may no longer be suitable for you. Letting these go now will now make room for the things that matter to you most today and in the future. Accepting that not every goal is right for you will help you release old ambitions or goals without feeling like you’ve quit or failed. Accepting your personal growth will also contribute to that.

When you let go of goals that no longer serve you, you readjust your thinking and focus and make room for the good things to come – this is true growth and will serve you well in life and at work.


Are you setting the right goals at your current employer? Do your colleagues help you achieve those goals? How easy is it for you to make improvements? Let us know in a review on kununu so we can help jobseekers find great workplaces!


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