Finding Your “Why” & Goal Setting Guide

What’s your “why”?


• Is it to make varsity?

• To play your sport at the collegiate level?

• To play at the professionally?

• Or, are you unsure?


Finding your “why” is extremely important and could be the key to increase your motivation. Your “why” gives you a direction as well as a goal to strive for. Keep reading for tips on how to find your “why”, using the “why” as motivation and goal setting strategies.

What is the “why”? Think of the “why” as an overall long-term goal. For example, if you are a high school athlete with aspirations to play at the collegiate level, your goal or your “why” is to achieve that aspiration of playing your sport in college. The “why” can be used as your driving force or motivation when you are debating on whether or not you want to go to the gym, go to the field, eat right, get good grades etc.



While this sounds simple it most certainly is not. You still may be asking yourself how do I find my “why”? Or how can I use my “why” to motivate me on a daily basis. In terms of finding your “why”, a few steps need to be taken:

1). Write down your overall goal or aspiration.

2). Underneath your goal, write down how you are going to accomplish the goal.

3). After reflecting on the first two steps, write down your “why” statement. (Ex. My “why” is to play baseball at the D1 level)


So, after finding your “why” how can you use this to help motivate you on a daily basis? Keep a constant reminder of what your “why” is. For example, keep your “why” statement on the lock screen of your phone, on your nightstand, on your fridge, in your car etc. Giving yourself a constant reminder of what your overall goal is will help you stay motivated each and every day.


Now, while finding your “why” and using it as an overall long-term goal is important, the process on the way to achieving your goal is just as if not more important. This is where goal setting comes in. Goal setting consists of process, outcome, short-term and long-term goals.

• Process Goals are goals where athletes can typically control their success. Meaning if an athlete puts forth enough effort, it is likely the goal will be accomplished.

Outcome Goals are goals that an athlete has little control over. Some examples would be earning a medal, winning a championship, or achieving a high ranking. While the athlete can put forth effort to try achieve these goals other elements(outside of the athletes control) also contribute to the achievement of the goal.

Short-Term Goals are goals that are typically directly related to current training or competition and can be achieved in a relatively short time period. These goals are stepping stones to achieve the overall long term goal (your “why”).

• Long-Term Goals are goals that overarch the series of short-terms goals that were set. Accomplishing many related short-term goals eventually allows an athlete to achieve their long-term goal.


So, how does this look when put into action. Putting pen to paper and writing this down will help organize and visualize what it will take for you to accomplish your long-term goal. Here’s an example of what your goal setting should look like:

1. Overall Long-Term Goal (Your “why)

a. Short-Term Goal #1

- How to accomplish this goal

Short-Term Goal #2

- How to accomplish this goal

Short-Term Goal #3

- How to accomplish this goal

Short-Term Goal #4

- How to accomplish this goal


With that being said, when creating your short-term goals, they should consist of a series of process goals that ultimately lead you to achieving your overarching long-term goal.


Overall, it’s important to find your “why”. Your “why” can be a powerful motivator for you on a daily basis to keep you on track to achieve your goals. Your “why” can also be a tool to create goals throughout the process. One thing to keep in mind. While having these goals is great, nothing can be accomplished without:

1. Commitment

2. Effort

3. Consistency

4. Self-Awareness

5. Patience

If you can find your “why”, create and write your goals as well as stay true to the five TNL Core Values, you will be well on your way to achieving your goals.


- Coach Shawn

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