We compared and contrasted two dispositional determinants of adaptive goal setting and successful goal striving: Self-efficacy, the confidence in own abilities, and action orientation, the ability of intuitive affect regulation. Based on a theoretical comparison, we hypothesized that self-efficacy increases autonomous motivation, whereas action orientation reduces controlled motivation in goal setting. Furthermore, both self-efficacy and action orientation were hypothesized to facilitate goal striving, as indicated by a decrease in goal-related conflict (action crisis) over time. A longitudinal field study with 207 students supported the hypotheses and demonstrated substantial statistical overlap between trait self-efficacy and action orientation. The results indicate that both self-efficacy and action orientation promote adaptive goal setting and successful goal striving, albeit through distinct underlying mechanisms.