The Truth About Excuses…that four letter word that stops us every time:
We all do it. We use that four letter word “can’t” to avoid doing things for numerous reasons.
“I can’t get to the gym today because it’s too late.” “I can’t go to that networking event because I’m too tired.” I can’t sit down and write the next chapter because I have to call my mom”. “I can’t meditate every day because I don’t have enough time.” “I can’t go to that workshop because I don’t have enough money.”
(By the way, not having enough time or money are our most common reasons for why we can’t stick to our goals.)
But, the problem with buying into these BS stories is that they keep us in victim mode. When you say you “can’t” do something it suggests that you have no control over the situation at all.
Which by the way, is NOT true. Now yes, it’s true you can’t control other people, the economy, or all of your life’s circumstances. But you CAN control your reaction to what’s happening in your life. You have control over your attitude and responses. AND, by making one little shift, you can take back the reins of control once again.
How? Replace I “can’t”, with I “won’t”.
But, saying I “won’t” is more truthful, isn’t it?
It’s not that you don’t have enough time to meditate every day. The truth is, you just don’t “want” to carve out that time from your busy day. Finding the time will take work and require you to sacrifice doing something else.
It’s not that you can’t get to the gym, it’s that you “don’t want” to go to the gym. You don’t want to have to deal with all the effort that it will take, not to mention the potential muscle aches you’ll feel tomorrow.
Because if it’s really important to you, you’ll make the time and find the money to get it done. So, it’s not a matter of “I can’t”. It’s a matter of “I won’t”.
Which is super empowering! Because you are no longer a victim to your circumstances. You are taking responsibility for your actions and you’re either willing to accept your excuses or not. This honesty policy puts you in the driver’s seat.
Here’s a great assignment to bust those lies.
Write down at least 10 of your excuses. This shouldn’t take that long because we all know our excuses by heart. But, stop right now, and actually write them down.
This is not a “See, I AM a loser destined to be a failure” expedition. This is not something to beat yourself up about. This is part of being human and we ALL have tons of excuses that seem like really good reasons for not getting things done. Yes, me too!
So, write out your top 10 excuses.
Next to them, write out why those excuses are total BS.
As I said, time and money are our favorite excuses but rarely are they true. “Where there is a will, there is a way”. Why are those excuses big fat lies? Write it out.
Then, write out what you will DO instead.
For example, let’s say “I can’t get to the gym because I don’t have time” is your fave excuse. You’ve identified that’s a big lie because you do manage to have time to watch Netflix every day! So to revamp the “I don’t have time” excuses, you may:
– set your alarm for earlier in the morning
– gather your gym clothes and have them ready the night before
(I know people who’ve slept in their gym clothes so in the morning they just got up and went to the gym!)
– set a time to meet someone else at the gym (workout buddies work!)
– bring your gym clothes with you in the morning and then go straight from work
– look into classes being offered and schedule them into your week
– check out YouTube for FREE tutorials and classes which eliminates the time needed to even go to the gym
Do you see how there are actually many ways to “create” time by having a plan of attack? Just by having your clothes ready to go ahead of time, saves a lot of time if you are trying to squeeze in a workout before work…
What about the money excuse? “I can’t take that workshop because I don’t have enough money”. Really? Let’s bust that wide open.
you could contact the organization and work out a payment plan
ask the organization if they need volunteers which could help you lower your attendance fee or even eliminate it
you can make your own coffee and/or pack a lunch to save on overpriced meals out
could you pick up a side job?..maybe drive for Uber or create an account on Task Rabbit.
find a neighbor who needs help with babysitting or housekeeping
All of us have too much junk…do you have something you could sell on Ebay or Craig’s list?
Those are just a few ways you can create extra money for something, if you REALLY WANT IT.
Don’t let that four letter word “can’t” get in your way. Swap it out for the truth. “I won’t” and get honest about why you’re stuck. Then take back the reins of control by calling out your excuses and replacing them with concrete actions.
And sometimes this is too much to do on our own. “I can’t ask for help” is another popular excuse. If you need help, ask. Get in touch at firstname.lastname@example.org and we’ll get to work on this together.