Do you know why?

The road to success

Goals are good. When it comes to setting them and measuring progress, we ask all the right questions and use the right metrics to move forward and accomplish them; who, what, where, when, etc? The answers to those questions keep us on track, focused, purposeful. We measure, calculate, recalculate…it’s mostly tangible.

The hardest part to measure, is the “why?” but is often the most important component in setting and realizing goals. Why are we doing what we’re doing? It certainly seems less tangible, but is really critical to determine.

Our “why” for doing something addresses the motivations for doing something. Critical. Without that one, “less tangible” aspect, it is a lot harder to reach any goal I set for myself…especially on those days when I just don’t feel like it.

It’s pretty easy to give up on a goal given the right set of circumstances. I’m tired, discouraged, feel like I’m not making progress, something more appealing shows itself…it’s pretty easy.

Which is why the hardest part is the most important part. Know your “why!”


Because when you want to quit, and you likely will at some point, you can come back to it and remember the motivation, the reason for setting the goal in the first place.

It’s the same concept when learning to live a “Measured Life.” Knowing why I do what I do is critical, and not just in the big, long term goals, but in the smaller, everyday activities. Setting a 5 or 10 year goal is fantastic. Setting a 5 minute or 10 day goal is too.

How about getting up earlier? To get a little more done. Showing self-control when you go to the pantry? To keep/get your weight where you want it. Refrain from saying a hurtful word? To maintain good interpersonal relationships with others.

Little decisions, in the moment, made for the right reasons, get you the outcomes you want. Keep your “why” in front of you. Then, when you look back you’ll see those measured moments got you where you wanted to be.

Why do you do what YOU do?



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4 thoughts on “Do you know why?

  1. This is a great concept, Michelle! I am going to share this with the kids. I can see how asking this question is really the beginning of creating motivation in the first place, which is where many people need help.
    Love the website!!

    • Thanks, Laura! I’m glad you can share it with your kids; getting young people to evaluate their lives and run their motivations and subsequent behavior through that grid will develop such a strong sense of self and purpose. Thanks for engaging with us at Measured Lives! P.S. Perhaps the 3-4 years olds are on to something by asking that question ALL THE TIME?

  2. my chiro practice said the same thing when motivating their clients to get into better shape/health 🙂 Answering that question is difficult to nail down when pressed, for some… as they don’t know exactly why, especially when pressed to answer… “why are you doing (fill in the blank)?” good question to ask… 😉

    • Thanks, Tammie! It’s a great question for a lot of contexts and gets us thinking. If we examine our lives moment to moment enough and live from our known values, beliefs and personal strengths, we’ll be ready to give an answer to that great question when someone asks!

      Have fun examining your own life and understanding your motivations as you work toward your goals!