goalodicy
n. The continued pursuit of a goal despite evidence that the goal cannot be achieved.

Example Citations:
If you suffer from goalodicy you find yourself so obsessed by the goal that you ignore the realities. You will think that the achievement of the goal will save you from all the difficult work, sacrifices and choices that you really need to make. This suspension of reality leads to reckless behaviour.
—Shaa Wasmund, "Book extract: Goals must not block out reality," The Sunday Times, October 23, 2011

Don't fall victim to 'goalodicy'

Once you start to think of some target (such as reaching a mountain's summit, or making a million, or staging the perfect wedding) as part of you, it becomes almost impossible to abandon it, even when the evidence suggests that you should.
—Oliver Burkeman, "The Power of Negative Thinking," Psychologies Magazine, September 12, 2012

Earliest Citation:
Third, the chapter explores one particular process employed by organizations to stifle learning. This process, termed 'goalodicy', describes how organizations justify the continued pursuit of goals in the face of contradictory evidence that the goal can be attained.
—D. Christopher Kayes, "The Limits and Consequences of Experience Absent Reflection," in Michael Reynolds, Russ Vince (eds), Organizing Reflection, Ashgate Publishing, October 30, 2004

Notes:
Goalodicy is the groupthink equivalent of theodicy, the effort to maintain a belief in God despite the presence of evil in the world, which entered the language in the late 18th century.

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