What To Do When Your Friends and Family Aren’t Supportive of Your Goals

So many of you have told me that you have been struggling to find harmony between your personal life and between the big goals and success that you strive to achieve for yourself… and even more have mentioned to me that part of the issue isn’t because you’re lacking confidence or the motivation necessary to take the first step toward your goals, but because you can’t find the support that you’re looking for from your friends, family, and others around you.

Let me tell you: this is not a rare issue!

When it comes to setting goals and taking the steps to achieving them, all of us are bound to run into a lot of obstacles along the way. After all, life is full of them!

But how can we recover when our friends and family aren’t as supportive of us as we imagined they would be?

While I touch a little bit about this subject on Episode 101 of Productivity Paradox this week, I want to take some more time here to discuss this even further… because we all have been there at some point or another, right? Let’s jump in!

 

What to do When Your Friends + Family Aren’t Supportive of Your Goals

 

ACCEPT THAT IT’S GOING TO HAPPEN—

As I mentioned before… Not feeling supported enough from time to time is bound to happen in life no matter what. And while I will admit that it isn’t at all fun… there are some things that you can do to help yourself over the hump when it occurs.

The first step is to accept that it’s going to happen. Now, this doesn’t mean that you’re ignoring all of your personal feelings and pretending that all is well in the world, but rather… it means that you’re accepting that everyone is entitled to their own opinion, and you are bound to be met with some resistance somewhere along the way.

Whenever you’re coming to grips with someone who isn’t giving you the support that you hoped for… try to rise up and meet them from a level of compassion and understanding (the same place that you want others to meet you from).

Keep an open dialog going whenever you’re faced with some objection from those around you… and dig deeper until you arrive at the root of the problem!

Often, our friends and family don’t always realize that we are feeling unsupported and that we need them to buy into our goals and other plans. And when that happens, sometimes the best course of action is to simply allow yourself to feel vulnerable and to ask for the support that we are looking for.

 

THINK ABOUT WHO (WHERE) THE CRITICISM COMES FROM—

If you find that a lot of the objection you are met with comes from one particular person, or one particular group of people… a good question to ask yourself is Why?

Is there a root cause to their behavior?

For example: If you are met with objection from a family member (let’s say, your spouse) about the budget you have set for the month… is it due to the tight financial situation that they experienced as a kid? Or, if you’re met with opposition about a planning system… could it be because they had a really regimented childhood?

Try to define where the opposition comes from (and why) and remember: meet it from a level of understanding and compassion. A little bit of understanding from your camp can go a long way when it comes to finding potential resolutions to the root issue!

 

SEPARATE FACT FROM FICTION—

Another great thing to do when you’re met with objection from a friend or family member is to work to separate fact from fiction.

Is there a reason that they are not willing to support you? (Refer back to thinking about where the criticism you’re met with comes from.) If there isn’t any specific reason that you can think of, then is there an emotional hinge that their opinion is resting on? Could they be feeling excluded or ignored?

On the other side of that coin lies truth. So, if you come up empty-handed when you start to evaluate their reaction from an emotional place, another great thing to consider is whether or not there is any truth to what they’re saying about your goals or your planning regimen.

 

ADJUST YOUR EXPECTATIONS—

Just as it is important to accept that a little bit of negativity or opposition is bound to happen at some point or another along your journey… it’s equally important to become comfortable with adjusting your expectations along the way. This is especially true when it comes to the expectations that many of us have of others around us.

Whenever you’re met with objection from a friend or family member… Try adjusting your expectations of them by allowing them to buy in in small chunks.

If your spouse is expressing discontent with your budget allowance for the month… offer them an opportunity to buy in to your financial goals in a smaller way than you originally planned.

For example: try focusing on one specific area of your budget each month. Spend, let’s say, a few months or an entire year slowly working to reduce your credit card debt… or putting away a little bit more into your savings each month until your spouse becomes more comfortable with the overall end goal you’ve outlined.

An important takeaway here is that any progress—big or small—is still progress! Remember to reinforce good behavior when you’re met with it and adjust your expectations within reason when you’re not.

 

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What are some things that help you whenever you’re not feeling the support that you need to achieve your goals? Share your experiences (and your tips and tricks!) with me in the comments below… And tune into Episode 101 for even more conversation about goal setting, planning, productivity, and more!

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Tonya Dalton
Tonya Dalton