“Whenever clients set goals, I have them ask themselves, ‘Why?’” says Grasso. The reason you want to, say, drop 25 pounds is never simply because you’d like to be 25 pounds lighter. You assume it will make you look better and make you more attractive to others; and that, in turn, leads to happiness. Grasso calls the perceptions about what you want and the various sources that influence them your “story,” and he recommends writing it down. “You might be surprised by what comes out,” he says. It’s often anger and cynicism, comparing yourself with others. Once you know what your story is, you can begin to act on it and change it—hence the name of his coaching program, the Change the Story Method. When you figure out why a certain goal is important to you— and that it’s not just a passing fancy that’s covering up some other issue—you’re more inclined to go after it.