You know those people that find an excuse as to why they can’t all the time?
Why they’re a victim of their lives, and why nothing can save them? Why they can’t do this, why they can’t do that, why they essentially can’t do anything at all. They’re stuck. They’re victims of their circumstances and victims of their lives. They have boatloads of stories and excuses on why they just can’t. End of sentence, period, no more discussion. Look they just can’t OK? Give them a break! Don’t keep going on and on about it!
I know those people because once upon a time, I was one of those people.
If someone suggested I do something, change something, be something, I’d stammer: “But I can’t..because..” and follow that with some lame, self-defeating excuse. Over and over again, endlessly. I can’t do this because of that. I can’t do that because of this. I don’t know how. I don’t know the steps. I don’t have the means. What if this happens? What if that happens? It’s too risky. I just can’t take the chance. If it goes south, I will be in a worse position than I am now. It’s a bad idea. I just don’t want to talk about it anymore. Stop pushing me!
I am sure that everyone has either gone through this themselves or knows someone like this. It’s exhausting! What is worse is that this often goes hand in hand with also shutting everyone else down. Oooh, I dunno if you really want to do that. That sounds scary, bad, dangerous, reckless, etc. Have you thought this all the way through? I think this is a bad idea. What is wrong with what you have, are doing now? But what if this happens, or that happens, or the world ends. The warnings and judgements are just plain over the top and ridiculous. One thing for sure, you can rely on anyone like this to not only find excuses for themselves as to why they can’t do it but to also find excuses for why YOU can’t do anything as well.
If you’re around people like this, then you already know how toxic they are. If you are this person, then the reality is: You are toxic to yourself. You are standing in your own way! Either way, you need to make some changes. You need to find a way to shut these voices down. You need to stop having them yammer endlessly in your ear. They will suck your soul dry. Crush your dreams. Steal your energy and your good mood.
The first step I took was to stop looking at excuses and start looking at possibilities.
There will always be problems in life. I repeat, there will literally always be problems in life!! No one has a problem-free life. The difference really comes down to where you throw your focus. Are you going to focus on how defeated you are or are you going to empower yourself? Are you going to let your problems get the best of you, or are you going to act despite your problems? Are you going to give into fear, or step into courage?
Are you going to live, or are you going to stay stagnant? Are you going to seize the day? Are you going to have an awesome experience of living and life? Are you going to make the most of it? Or are you going to sell yourself short? Live someone else’s life? Lower your expectations to the point where you are suffocating?
Ask yourself: Is this how you want to spend the rest of your life?
Newsflash: Risks are risky! Who knew? Things happen. Outcomes aren’t always what we expect. Yes, something awful could happen. It’s true. Something awful could also happen if you do nothing. Either way, you’re not safe. Doing nothing does not insulate you, it does not protect you from danger. Things can happen to anyone.
Your biggest risk in taking action is not that you’ll fail. It’s that you will learn, you will grow, you will experience, you will live, and you might even have a fantastic adventure. Life can be an adventure, but only if you treat it like one. Playing it safe all the time, is not going to expose you to much if anything new. It’s going to be a whole lot of the same. And it is fine if that is what you want. However, if you’re stuck there because of excuses of why you can’t. Look again. What can you do? Start there.
Start anywhere really, just start.
You do not need to have every step figured out before you get started! It’s more important to get started. Get some momentum going. Start letting go of whatever is holding you back. Sometimes, the most amazing opportunities come to us when we begin to let go of our fears and start moving forward in courage. This is not some “Woo Woo Theory”, it’s because our perspectives shift. We are able to see things we weren’t able to see before. Our perspective may have clouded our vision. Some of those opportunities may have been there all the time. Some we may attract because of the change in our behavior.
People respond to what we give out.
If for example, we are the energy vampire as described above, people will want to avoid us. They won’t want to be around us as much. They certainly won’t be inspired to want to do more with us. If however, we have genuine enthusiasm for life, a thirst for adventure, a heart full of courage, we will be viewed as someone who is dynamic, vibrant, exciting, and fun to be around. People may very well want to make more time for us, to spend more time with us. With that, we may be provided some new opportunities.
The next time you hear someone make excuses as to why they can’t, hear what they are really saying: They don’t want to. If it’s you making the excuses, ask yourself why that is? The most likely answer will be fear and discomfort. We are all awfully comfortable with staying exactly where we are. We stay with what we are used to, so long as it “quasi” works for us, even if that is terrible. It’s our instinct to want to always stay safe. But there is no true safety in anything. There are never any guarantees. One thing for sure: Nothing ever happens if you’re not willing to do anything.
The biggest turning point for me was to ask myself if this is how I wanted to live out every day for the rest of my life. For me, the answer to that question was a resounding “No!”. I had to get real with myself. Was I making excuses because I was afraid? What was I afraid of? When examined, many of my fears were downright irrational. I had given so much time and energy to nursing and growing my fears, that they had grown out of proportion.
When examined, I realized that many of the outcomes I so feared would be survivable.
They’d be different than what I was used to, but they wouldn’t be the bitter end. I could make it through, I could bounce back. I began focusing on whatever I could do and not focusing on whatever I couldn’t. This shift was incredibly empowering. I started to realize I was capable of a whole lot. I could do far more than I realized, and that awareness still continues to grow every day. I am not some weak minded, defeated human being. I am capable of so much. I can do so much. I have so much power. So much is possible. How much? I won’t know until I try.
I am done holding myself back.
I am going to seize this life and make the most of each and every day! I am not going to give the naysayers and the excuse-makers the time of day. I am going to surround myself with people who also believe. Who also are living life to the fullest. Who also are stepping into their power. Who also live with courage.
I want to inspire others and I want to be surrounded by people who inspire me. I want us to build each other up and not tear each other down. I want to tell myself and others why we can and not why we can’t. I want to find excuses to live, and to live more, rather than find excuses not to.