Wednesday, June 25, 2014

No Excuses

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No Excuses. 
Wisdom sometimes comes in the brevity of a saying.  The two words in the title of this post are so simple, yet enormously powerful.  Anyone could have come up with that phrase.  And practically everyone I know has said it at one point or another, in reference to a number of things.  From the parent demanding their child’s room be picked up “before dinner, no excuses”, to the boss of a company stating that they “need bigger returns this year, no excuses!” Everyone has heard these words.
But too many times, when this phrase is thrown out there, it has been used in such a manner that those declaring it fail to embrace what is actually being said.  Think about this for a second.  No Excuses.  When you actually take this saying in the utmost literal sense, you are basically denying any possible chance for failure on an objective.  You are immediately denying yourself any way out of a “why” this or that, did or didn’t happen.  Let that truly sink in.  Your reason for not completing something does not exist. It just isn’t there.
Because a potential alibi is no longer lingering as a possibility, what does this actually mean?  It means that whereas before you had two options for the outcome of a goal, you now only have one.  Whereas before you either “will” or “will not” achieve success, you now just “will”.  There is no “will not” in the equation anymore.  Yes, it really looks and is that simple, as you just read, and you know this already, so why do so many people fail at seeing things through?
Whether you set out to lose/gain weight, to get a different job, to go back to school, to go up to that person and say hello – whatever it may be, why are you not able to do it yet?  It could be that you get invited to all these functions (birthday parties, dates, family gatherings, job related outings, etc), and it would be very impolite not to partake in the festivities, right?  I mean, you actually want to lose weight, but all these things aren’t letting you.  But now, if you throw in the true meaning of “No Excuses”, what happens?  All your reasons as to why it is impossible for you to lose weight are no longer valid.  They aren’t valid, because they don’t exist.  They don’t exist, because YOU don’t allow them to exist as excuses.

The person who still doesn’t get what I am trying to convey here says, “Great, so basically I can’t ever go out and do this or that!”  We are terminating excuses, or reasons we allow to get in our way, yet here goes the individual once again forming a new set of alibis.  It is a nasty human habit we have, to justify our short comings.  It is basically whining, and the person who whines is truly only looking for sympathy.  That sympathy makes them feel ok for the excuses we just delivered.
But, if you truly, truly, follow the “No Excuses” mantra, there is no whining.  There is no searching out for sympathy on excuses.  There are no excuses – no reasons to give the air as to why we did not complete our goal.  So what is left? Commitment.  Determination.  Resolve.  When there are no excuses, there is only accomplishing.  You WILL lose weight. You WILL get a different job.  Because there are “No Excuses”, your only absolute option is to succeed.  Whether it takes one month, one year, or five – your only option is to accomplish whatever goal you have set for yourself, the minute you commit to “No Excuses”.  When you do this, you are making yourself 110% responsible for the outcome of your steps, and actions, as it pertains to the attainment of your goal.  You alone are responsible for your success.  Once you hold yourself completely accountable with no excuses, you realize that you HAVE to succeed.
To get the point across even further, let's say that you are naturally shy.  Let's even say that you are mortified of talking to strangers.  Let's also throw into the mix that there is a particular stranger, that you actually have noticed for quite some time - say in school, at work, wherever.  Your desire, when you see this person, is to go up to them and say hello.  Unless you have been extremely shy at some point in your life, this may seem like one of the easiest tasks in the world.  But, for someone who is naturally very shy, or even who lacks any type of confidence whatsoever, this is the most nerve wrecking thing.  So how would this person employ the "No Excuses" mantra in this scenario?  In its most simple breakdown, this scenario has two options for the taking:
  1. Go up to the person and say hello, or
  2. Use the shyness, fear, panic attack (whatever you call this inner hold back) as an excuse to run away.
But, what happens when you take away your excuse?  What happens when you take away the option that is being used as an excuse?  What occurs when you have just reduced a decision making process, to an inner command?
  1. Go up to the person and say hello
Imagine if you are driving down a path that you are unsure of, and you come to a fork in the road.  You can either go left, or go right.  Without a map, or GPS, you don't know what the outcome of either choice is going to be.  You have to make a decision.  Now, imagine that you are driving down the same path as before, but this time, there is no fork in the road.  To the left is a dead stop, and your only option is to go right.  You HAVE to go right, in order to keep moving forward.  That is essentially what is being done when you annihilate excuses as options.
Maybe it is decision making that is the real dilemma for someone.  If that is the case with you, the next post to follow this one will address that.  For now though, strip away all the alternatives you are

Lover of Family, Life, and Possibility. Creative Soul. "Stop Thinking You Can't, and Start Knowing You Can." Reach out to me, and let me know how I can help!


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