Whether it’s our relationships, career path or financial standing, every aspect of our life requires some sort of strategy. And although each of those allocations demands a different approach, they all seem to be hindered by the same common excuses.
1. “I can’t do it anyway.”
You are never going to achieve a goal if you associate it with failure from the start. Any smart person knows that upon planning your endeavor, it’s important to take your risks into account. However, the instatement of that pursuit should be determined by the rewards those risks promise, not the fear they strike in you.
Consider this: fear, along with the doubt it provokes, is initially welcomed into your mind as a simple thought. Every time this thought runs through your mind, it gains strength. Imagine how much power it will have over you if you allow it to run laps in your head from the very beginning.
Don’t give fear that room to grow. If you really couldn’t do something, the idea would not have resonated with you long enough for you to formulate an execution plan.
2. ”I’ll do it tomorrow.”
Ah, procrastination. This excuse is most common with our generation; which is a scary thought considering it diminishes any potential for success. The problem here is this: if you can push your plans to the following day, what’s going to stop you from doing the exact same thing tomorrow? And then the day after that? Nothing.
If you make a plan to lose 20 pounds or tackle a research assignment and you tell yourself “I’ll start tomorrow, it’s no big deal,” then guess what? You’re not going to start it tomorrow. Tomorrow, you’ll use the same excuse and probably make a different excuse for using the same excuse two days in a row. That can add up to a lot of excuses. Now you’re just a pathetic fool who wastes time making them. And this particular excuse becomes more of a detrimental cycle rather than just a common saying.
This is what you have to remember: the closer to the deadline you push something or the longer you wait to get it started, the worse your results will be. A paper written one week in advance will always put the last minute paper to shame. If you want to get in shape, you can do so in two weeks. But if you started your diet and new workout regime a month ago like you had planned, you’d probably be in even better shape by now.
3. ”It’s not worth it.”
You will never truly know the outcome of something until you try it. Now, this is a pretty tricky one because there are those instances when the pursuit is, in fact, not worth your time or energy. This is why it’s important to carefully think and decide whether or not you want to move forward, and most importantly, why you do.
If you weigh out the pros and cons and have a reasonable explanation as to why it won’t be beneficial, then by all means scrap it up and figure out a new approach. But you have to do this with reason. If you don’t take the time and think of both the positive and negative ramifications, there might be an underlying reason as to why you think the whole endeavor is a waste.
Most people who don’t have an open mind in their pursuits tend to give in to fear and uncertainty. They say it’s not worth their time because they have doubts. Do not throw away an idea or a plan because of doubt alone. Observe the situation from every angle before making your decision.
4. ”I don’t know what I want.”
This excuse can mean different things to different people. A 20-year-old college student can say they don’t know what they want and most people will probably agree with them. Generally speaking, people in their early 20’s are only beginning to get a feel for the real world and what role they want to play in it. On the other hand, there is no guarantee that a 45-year-old business owner will be any more sure of himself than the undergraduate was.
Life experience does have an impact, but when it comes to what we want and what makes us happy, deep down, we all know the answer. We’ve been acquainted with ourselves longer than anyone around us, and we’ve been deciding for ourselves, from the second we were born, what puts a smile on our face. That’s not to say a ten-year-old boy can make a mental note of becoming a hedge fund manager, but he might take a strong liking to the game of Monopoly—something that could possibly stay with him as he enters adulthood.
This excuse should also be avoided in relationships. If you tell yourself you don’t know what you want out of the relationship, that probably just means you don’t want that commitment to begin with. The right person for you will remove any and all doubt.
5. ”The timing is wrong.”
Whether it’s a prospective relationship or a business venture, the concept of timing is the same: There is no better time than now. Many arguments can be made against this idea; the poor economy acts as one. However, think about this. Sure, right now might not be the best time to settle down or open up your business, but how do you know when the right time will come? What if the theoretical “perfect time” comes around five years from now? Are you really going to sit and wait?
The thing is, timing will almost always, in some way, be working against you. Your personal life could be in shambles around the same time you meet the girl of your dreams. Or the economy could be declining around the same time your store opening is most beneficial to the community. You have to make it work. If you sit and wait for the time to be perfect for all aspects of your life, you’re going to be waiting for a long time, pal.
It’s true opportunities are at every corner, but they don’t linger like you would like you would like them to. If you wait or let go of an idea, a conquest, or a relationship, the chance may not come around again.
6. ”It’s too much work.”
Nothing truly valuable in life is easily obtained. Everyone has heard the expression “easy come, easy go” and that’s because it bares all truth. If you want a strong foundation with your relationship or career, it’s going to take a lot of work. There will be hardships and misfortunate circumstances, but they will allow you to grow.
If you’re sitting in class, at a desk in your office or across the table from your girlfriend and think “This is just too hard,” remember this: it will most likely be just as hard sitting in a different class, in a different office, or across the table from a different girl.
7. ”I can do/find something better.”
They say the grass is always greener on the other side. Whoever “they” is never visited that other side. The truth is: the grass is greener where you water it. It’s important to be confident that what you have is enough. If it weren’t enough, you wouldn’t have obtained it. You need to learn to trust yourself to not settle and know what you deserve.
This applies to both your love life and career. If you have a good man/woman in your life, you wouldn’t have to ponder about how someone else would be in their place. If you’re about to enter a relationship and think to yourself “I wonder if there is anyone better” it means one of two things. Either A. you’re settling for less than you deserve or B. your fear and doubt of your future commitment is making you take that step back. If you were meant to be with someone better, you would be.
Same thing with your career. If you were meant to be on a different path, you would be on that path. Everything you do now will eventually lead you in that direction; that is how you learn your place in the world. You should never limit your potential because you think it could be exerted better elsewhere; do your best wherever your best is required.
8. ”I don’t have the necessary resources.”
This excuse doesn’t really apply to the filthy rich who have everything within arms reach, and that’s because it’s unlikely for them to even utter such words. And they may have an advantage, but that doesn’t take the opportunity away from you.
If you have an idea but don’t have the means or tools to follow through with it, you have to think outside the box. Creativity is one of the greatest assets you can utilize. The man who has fewer advantages does extra work, and is consequently more respected.
9. ”I’m scared of the outcome.”
This excuse can be put in the same category as fearing your abilities, except now you fear both the initial task as well as the result. Either way, fear should never stand in your way if you have your heart and mind set on a certain goal.
As previously stated, you will never know the outcome until you follow through with your goals and experience them for yourself. Which brings us to the next and last excuse:
10. ”They said/I heard…”
Any excuse you begin with “I heard that…” or “They said…” should immediately be removed from the table. You have to understand that everyone experiences things differently-- from relationships, to jobs, to Mexican restaurants and yoga classes. Even if you share the same general interests as someone, you cannot let their word fully determine your actions.
Seeking advice could often be beneficial, however, it’s you who should always have the final say. If you are the one who had an idea and it resonated with you enough for you to be giving it this much thought, then you shouldn’t let someone else overshadow the significance of those plans. If you let others speak for your pursuits and have someone else’s thoughts take place of your own, you are no longer your own person or living your own life. Using this excuse too often could make you lose sight of who you are.
Any form of greatness in your life will always come equipped with complications and uncertainty. It is imperative to understand your full potential and put your best foot forward. Making excuses as to why you couldn’t achieve your goals or move forward with them will get you nowhere in life. Whatever excuse you can come up with is never going to be the true reason your ventures failed. They failed because you gave up.
Kathy Polo | Elite