Refocusing and Adjusting Your Goals: When to Pivot and When to Push Through

Refocusing and Adjusting Your Goals: When to Pivot and When to Push Through

Setting out to achieve our goals can be an exciting and motivating experience. Whether it’s a personal, academic, or professional goal, we often approach it with a positive mindset and strong determination. However, as we progress towards our goals, we may face unexpected challenges and setbacks that can throw us off course. In such situations, we may need to reassess our goals and modify our approach to either pivot or push through. In this article, we will explore the factors that can influence this decision and provide some helpful tips to guide you towards making the best choice for your goals.

Pivoting Your Goals

Pivoting your goals means making a significant change in your approach, timeline, or end goal. This can involve shifting from one path to another, modifying your original vision, or abandoning your initial goal altogether. There are several situations where pivoting your goals may be necessary:

  • When your original goal is no longer feasible: Sometimes, unforeseen circumstances can arise which make it impossible to achieve your original goal. For example, if you planned to travel to a certain country for a course, but a travel ban is imposed, you may need to pivot your goal by finding a different course to study.
  • When your circumstances change: Your personal or professional circumstances may change during the pursuit of your goal, making it necessary to reassess your approach. For example, if you planned to go back to school but then found out you were expecting a child, you may need to pivot your goal by delaying your studies or finding a different way to achieve your desired outcome.
  • When you lose passion for your original goal: Sometimes, we may realize that the goal we set is no longer aligned with our values, interests, or priorities. In such cases, pivoting your goal can provide a much-needed shift in focus and renewed motivation. For example, if you planned to become a lawyer, but during your studies, you discover that you are more interested in social work, you may need to pivot your goal and explore different career paths.

If you find yourself in any of these situations, it may be time to pivot your goals. However, before making any major changes, it’s important to assess the pros and cons of your decision. Consider whether the new goal aligns with your vision, values, and priorities, and whether it’s feasible and realistic given your circumstances. It’s also important to seek advice and support from trusted friends, family, or professionals if necessary.

Pushing Through Your Goals

Pushing through your goals means persisting with your original plan despite any challenges or setbacks. This approach requires resilience, determination, and a willingness to learn from failures. There are several situations where pushing through your goals may be necessary:

  • When you encounter obstacles: Obstacles are a normal part of any goal pursuit, and they can test your resilience and determination. However, if you believe that your initial goal is still feasible despite the obstacles, it may be worth pushing through and finding creative solutions to overcome them.
  • When you are close to achieving your goal: Sometimes, we may feel discouraged or overwhelmed when we are close to achieving our goals. However, if you have invested a significant amount of time and effort into your goal, pushing through may be the best option to reap the rewards of your hard work.
  • When you learn from your failures: Failures can be valuable learning experiences that can help us improve and grow. If you encounter failures during your goal pursuit, it may be worth pushing through and using your learnings to adjust your approach and achieve your goal in the end.

If you decide to push through, it’s important to stay focused and motivated throughout your goal pursuit. This may involve breaking your goal into smaller, achievable steps, seeking support and accountability from others, and celebrating your progress along the way. Remember that setbacks and failures are a normal part of any journey, and they can help you learn and grow.


Refocusing and adjusting your goals can be a challenging but necessary part of any goal pursuit. Whether you choose to pivot or push through, it’s important to assess your decision based on your values, vision, and circumstances. Remember that there is no one-size-fits-all approach to achieving your goals, and your journey may be unique to you. By staying flexible, resilient, and focused, you can overcome any challenges that come your way and achieve success in your endeavors.