When working with clients who have had a traumatic or undesirable past where they were victims of others, I have noticed that many of them will use anger as their primary motivator to reaching their goals. Some of them put a great deal of importance into being successful, but for the wrong reasons. Goal-setting is important for people to be successful in their lives. The issue for these people is not goal-setting itself, but the reasons behind the goals. If you are trying to reach goals to spite others, happiness will likely continue to elude you. On the other hand, if you learn about what you want, without using angry feelings to make your decisions, contentment could be well within your grasp.

Many times people use memories and frustrations from other people to motivate themselves to reach their goals. If this is your primary motive, your will likely continue to feel as though something is missing from your lives. This is likely because the motivation is primarily coming from an external source. If you are going to find contentment from what you want to achieve, it is because you have internally decided to reach this goal.

External motivators are not all bad. They often do promote us to achieve things and make decisions that are not necessarily harmful. The downside is that they are often made when we feel that our backs are against the wall. Internally based goals are typically made without the same pressure. These decisions tend to be more well thought out and not based on emotion alone. They are not made to seek the approval of others, nor to make others notice or feel anything in particular. These decisions are made for ourselves.

Therefore, in order to find contentment in  decisions, it is best to look within yourself and ask why you want what you want. When you understand this, you can get a better idea of what you are trying to accomplish and the reasons behind this. You can know what “needs” and “wants” you are trying to fulfill. This can help you with finding true contentment in your goals, rather than a temporary appeasement of anger and falling into a vindictive cycle where you are using your life as the pawn.