In this Wisdom Note, we want to examine the 11 most common excuses that we all use at times, and next we will learn how to overcome them. Our trail this week is a long one, so strap on your hiking boots and come along with me on a fast-paced trek over the 11 Mountains of Excuses.
Excuses come in many forms, and we tend to make them in many different ways. Even though they vary from person to person, there are certain excuses that we all tend to make at one time or another. On our trail this week, we will break down these excuses and discuss what they mean and how we can deal with them when they crop up in our lives.
Excuse Mountain #1: There’s not enough time.
This really means that you’re lacking passion, focus, discipline, and/or direction. Likewise, it suggests that your priorities are out of sorts and that you may be lacking the ability to manage your time effectively.
Alternatively, this excuse could indicate that you simply don’t value your time or just don’t want to take the time to do what you feel you must in order to achieve your desired outcomes. In fact, the causes for this excuse could very well be narrowed down to procrastination or even laziness.
Excuse Mountain #2: There’s not enough money.
This means that you don’t consider money to be a priority or you are simply looking for an easy way to make money and don’t have the desire, determination, persistence, or patience to work hard to achieve financial security.
This excuse also suggests that you could simply be lacking the strategies or ideas that could help you reach your financial objectives. Read a few books or get a mentor or a financial coach who can help you gain the necessary knowledge and understanding you need to succeed financially.
Excuse Mountain #3: I don’t have an education.
This excuse means that you lack creativity, inspiration, and desire. In addition, it would seem that you also lack a willingness to work hard and go the extra mile to put a little more effort into achieving your objectives — despite your lack of knowledge.
There are many multi-millionaires and billionaires who have nothing more than a high school education. Some don’t even have that. However, they were creative, had a desire, and were willing to work harder than anyone else to achieve their goals and objectives.
Excuse Mountain #4: I’m too old or young.
This excuse means you lack understanding, confidence, or perspective. Men and women of all ages have achieved great things. Therefore you are never too old or too young to attain your goals and objectives. It might be a little more difficult, which means that you may need to be more persistent, creative, and open to a greater array of experiences and opportunities. Alternatively, your age could actually work to your advantage. It just depends on your perspective and your ability to think flexibly about your circumstances.
Excuse Mountain #5: I don’t know how.
This excuse means you lack belief and confidence in your own abilities. It also means that you haven’t taken the time to practice, learn, or gain the experience or education necessary to “know what to do.”
This excuse is really very easy to combat. Simply learn how to do what you want to do by studying, reading books, gaining practical experience, asking for help, etc. Only by making mistakes over and over again will you eventually discover what works or doesn’t work for you.
Excuse Mountain #6: I can’t change.
This means you lack motivation and a reason to change. Moreover, this suggests that you lack emotional pain that would help you to accelerate change.
When it comes to our motives and desires, we are always pulled forward by the desire for pleasure or pushed forward by the desire to avoid pain. If you don’t believe you can change, you simply haven’t associated enough pain to NOT changing. Once you begin to look at all the dire consequences that will result from NOT making a change, then you will soon realize that the motivation was always there.
Excuse Mountain #7: I’m afraid to fail.
This excuse means you lack understanding, confidence, knowledge, and experience. Fear is nothing more than “False Evidence Appearing Real.” It’s our perspective of fear that frightens us and prevents us from moving forward. However, once we gain knowledge and understanding about the thing we fear, then that is the moment we build enough confidence to move forward and gain some experience. Subsequently, with enough “experience” under our belts, we develop even greater self-confidence that will propel us through our fears and toward the attainment of our goals and objectives.
Also consider that the trail to success is always strewn with obstacles, challenges, and problems. Along this path everyone makes mistakes. However, those who fail are those who simply give up and excuse their life away.
Excuse Mountain #8: It’s not the right time.
This excuse means you lack perspective, information, and resources. Sometimes it’s simply not the right time or season of life to take action. However, more often than not this is just a lame excuse that should indicate you lack perspective or you simply don’t have the necessary resources to deal with the circumstances at hand. Therefore, your first objective is to acquire the necessary resources to help you attain your desired outcome.
Excuse Mountain #9: I have to plan thoroughly first.
This excuse means you’re lacking perspective or you’re simply paralyzed by fear. There’s nothing wrong with planning for the future or taking the time to lay out a clear plan of action. However, if planning is all you do, then this indicates that there might be underlying fears that are preventing you from moving forward. Identify and overcome these fears, and subsequently, you will overcome your need for over-planning.
Excuse Mountain #10: It won’t work.
This excuse means you lack self-belief, motivation, creativity, patience, perspective, and persistence. All of these qualities are essential if you desire to eventually make things work. In fact, these qualities are absolutely essential for everything of value that you want to create in your life.
Excuse Mountain #11: I’m not inspired.
This excuse means you have poor habits that lead to a lack of discipline. Think about what kinds of habits you indulge in on a daily basis and about your typical routine throughout the day. More often than not you will find that inspiration isn’t a problem if you simply take the time to transform how you go about your day.
For instance, a lack of sleep could be causing you to feel tired, which leads to a lack of inspiration. If we dig a little deeper we could find that it’s your diet that’s causing your sleepless nights or that your lack of sleep is a result of not getting enough exercise throughout the week. Moreover, maybe you’re simply not getting enough exercise because you’re working longer hours than usual and, therefore, don’t have time to allocate for exercise.
This reminds me of excuses made that had an eternal consequence in a parable told by Christ explaining an invitation into His Kingdom in the analogy of a banquet in Luke 14:17-20, “When the banquet was ready, he sent his servant to tell the guests, ‘Come, the banquet is ready.’ But they all began making excuses. One said, ‘I have just bought a field and must inspect it. Please excuse me.’ Another said, ‘I have just bought five pairs of oxen, and I want to try them out. Please excuse me.’ Another said, ‘I just got married, so I can’t come.’”
Now that we have explored the 11 Mountains of Excuses and have trekked over them, next we will learn how to eliminate excuses forever.