Do not set unattainable goals
Those who suffer too much from the fear of failure, as well as those who tend to feel too guilty, tend to make generally incoherent choices, setting goals that are sometimes impossible to achieve. Healthy motivation, on the other hand, focuses on reasonable challenges. Trying to lose twenty kilos in a fortnight with a regular fasting regime or running a marathon after a month of occasional training is an impossible mission. In addition to the criterion of rationality, objectives are really achievable if they also stick to the criterion of measurability: ergo, good intentions need intermediate steps, or at least a compass to help us understand whether we are going in the right direction or not. Moreover, we must never forget that the goals we set ourselves must be calibrated to our real desires, never to the expectations that others have of us.
Why is it so easy to make mistakes? To get an answer to this question, you should probably read entire volumes of neurophysiology. Among the many reasons why people fail to comply with intentions are the so-called reward circuits, those that regulate the feelings of well-being that one feels after a pleasant or virtuous behaviour. The reward circuits work with different times depending on the stimuli and results: eating half a bar of chocolate when you are not supposed to, can give a feeling of well-being, i.e. a reward, more immediate and short-term than what would come from a possible future weight loss. It is therefore very important to work to strengthen the so-called delayed gratification, i.e. the ability to resist the temptations that promise immediate rewards and wait for a more conspicuous and rewarding future reward.