Aleksandra Marjańska: A Go-Getter Seeking New Challenges
“The ultimate achievement
is to reach your goal
while enjoying the ride”
You have a company called GoalAchievers. How do you define a goal achiever?
A goal achiever to me is someone strongly driven by goals and constant hunger for more – more to do, create, learn, experience in life. A go-getter who keeps seeking new challenges – to explore and expand more of what they are capable of. This desire doesn’t come from a feeling of lack, nor from external expectations. It’s rather a personal character trait. So, when I talk about high achievers – which I do a lot – I mean this kind of mindset or attitude. Almost a personality type.
These people are often passionate and visionary. They not only dream big, they also roll up their sleeves and do whatever it takes to make these dreams come true. And often they succeed – which makes them role models for others and gives them the “high achiever” status. But in my eyes these extraordinary achievements that the world sees and admires are not the reason for calling someone a goal achiever. These are natural results of being one.
It sounds like these people achieve their goals no matter what. So, why would they need a coach?
They don’t! Not in order to achieve their goals, at least. They would probably get there anyway, sooner or later. But what the outside world doesn’t realise is the high price that great many achievers pay for their achievements. The inner struggles they go through behind the scenes. The harshness they treat themselves with at times when they don’t live up to their own ideal of a superhuman. The exhaustion they bring themselves into while striving for their goals and visions.
I get the feeling that you are speaking from your own experience as well – is that true?
Absolutely. As early as in primary school I experienced passing out of exhaustion. I was an extreme perfectionist, putting long hours and great effort in my homework and not giving myself enough sleep or relaxation. Countless times I cried for no particular reason – other than feeling so stressed and stretched by my own goals. I know how it is to be paralysed by overwhelm or overthinking. There were days in my life when I just wanted to stay in bed, hide under the duvet and be left alone – I couldn’t handle yet another day of being a superhero. Plus I was beating myself up for feeling this way.
I thought I was alone in this experience. But through deep connections with other high achievers, through coaching them, through my research on them, I have discovered that this is in fact a surprisingly frequent phenomenon – that we need way more scientific data on. I call it High Achiever Syndrome, after Donna Marino (PsyD) who has coined this term and who I’m now thrilled to cooperate with.
Would you say it is possible to overcome the High Achiever Syndrome?
You’re asking the expert in “impossible” goals, so I really have a big smile on my face when I answer this question. Everything is possible! The very first step for a high achiever suffering from this syndrome is to recognise it and trust my words when I say that spectacular achievements don’t need to be earned with blood, sweat and tears. Don’t worry, it’s not about lowering your standards or settling for less – which is a poor advice an exhausted achiever often hears from others. You can still get what you want, and even more, while making sure your journey is full of joy.
What it takes is a personal transformation on many levels. My job is to facilitate this process while holding you accountable to your greatness at the same time. To do so, I have developed my signature method combining professional coaching and mentoring in a way designed for high achiever types. This will also be the subject of my own “impossible goal”: one of the first European PhD dissertations in Coaching Psychology.
So you are a coach, mentor, business woman, and a researcher too?
Indeed! It’s important for me to build my practice on scientific foundations. Plus I’m simply an academic nerd. And a writer, speaker, creative, mum, adventurer… All these identities are equally important to me and I refuse to highlight any as most important. Instead, I’ve finally found the way to let them all play out in my life and merge in my career.
Recently I’ve added another one: a stunt woman! I’ve started making one more “impossible dream” come true: my first documentary production. It’s a mini-series in which I challenge my body and mind through demanding often extreme sports that I’ve never tried before – to show others how much more is available to us and how much more we are capable of. This is why the show is called “Everyday Stunts”. We are now editing the first six episodes. I’m looking forward to sharing the final results with the world.
Which of your “stunts” so far has been most challenging?
I really wasn’t sure if I could learn from scratch a full sault on a trampoline – which we had to film in just two hours. It felt like going from zero to hero. But the most “impossible” stunt for me, in every thinkable way, was a ski jump. On GoalAchievers’ TV on YouTube you can already find out how it went.
What is the best piece of advice you could give to a goal achiever reading Global Woman Magazine?
Hmm, it would most likely be: If what I said resonates with you, reach out to me! Seriously. I will be more than happy to connect with you in person and find out what advice YOU need the most right now. I believe in a highly individual approach and real dialog. Having said that, I keep sharing my knowledge, experience, strategies and tools using various forms and channels. One of my favourites is my weekly FB live series GoalAchiever’s Cup of Tea. I’m also preparing an online guide for high achievers, all about how to stay on fire without burning out.
Here and now I want to leave you with two of the most powerful insights I have had on my own journey:
– Go with Your Flow and Your Flow only.
– There are many roads to your goal – you don’t need to choose the hardest one.
Aleksandra Marjańska (aka Aleks the GoalAchiever) works globally with visionary highachievers who want to discover an even better way to their most audacious goals. Using her signature method she makes sure they keep going for what they want and truly enjoy this journey. She also conducts a ground-breaking research on High Achiever Syndrome and ways of overcoming it. Her own current mission is impossible: a pioneer PhD in Coaching Psychology. She has combined her multiple passions and missions in one business, GoalAchievers. You can read more on her website www.goalachievers.eu, find her on Facebook @goalachievers.world or check out her YouTube channel Goal Achievers’ TV.