Enough with the excuses already! If you are an excuse-maker, I promise you, unless you change, YOU WILL NEVER REACH YOUR FULL POTENTIAL. Excuses take ownership off of you, and place them elsewhere so you don’t have to be accountable. Excuses are the calling card of the AVERAGE.
LACK OF INTELLIGENCE! Yup…my patented “fade-away”. I failed a test? Not smart enough! Did poorly on an assignment? Not smart enough! Low grades on my report card? Not smart enough! Enrolled in summer school courses in back-to-back years because I failed? NOT SMART ENOUGH!!
You get the idea. In my young eyes, failure was never my fault. Instead, it was the fault of my genetics! For whatever reason, I told myself, I wasn’t blessed with intelligence. I was cursed with a low IQ…a crutch I convinced myself I would have to bear for the rest of my life.
Why do we invent excuses? Because the excuse makes us feel better about ourselves…even if the excuse isn’t based on reality! As a teenager, I was able to justify my poor grades and academic average on my perceived lack of intelligence. I graduated high school having never taken ownership over my poor performance…a regret I live with to this day.
For whatever reason, excuses allow failure to seem more understandable. But what most don’t realize yet, is that failure is a necessary component for growth and success (more on that in a future article).
What is the real reason that I didn’t achieve high grades in school? The answer is very simple…I didn’t try. At all. To be completely honest, I can count the times I did homework on one hand – this includes studying for tests, exams, finishing projects, or reviewing lessons.
But…my excuse of low intelligence set me free from my laziness and poor work ethic. The excuse made me feel better about myself. It was my REASON for being lazy and not achieving.
Ownership is another characteristic that separates average people and excellent people. Like me in my high school days, average people don’t want to hear the truth about WHY, instead they fabricate stories (excuses) that justify and place blame elsewhere on their failure.
Late? “It’s because of the traffic.” “It’s because my alarm clock ‘didn’t go off’.” Stop making excuses, and take ownership. Leave earlier next time, and don’t let it happen again.
Didn’t finish your homework? “It’s because I had to work.” “It’s because I had chores to do.” “It’s because I didn’t know how to do the assignment.” Stop making excuses, and take ownership. Make time in your schedule, ask more questions, and don’t let it happen again.
Side note…If you don’t make time for something, it just means it’s not important to you. The time excuse is the lamest of them all.
It’s only when you begin to eliminate excuses and take FULL ownership over your failures that you will begin to reach your full potential.
If you are satisfied with mediocrity and never realizing what you truly are capable of, then by all means, FIRE THOSE EXCUSES OFF! However, the fact that you are still reading this article is probably an indication that you aren’t satisfied with average. Keep reading…
Are Excuses Ever Valid?
I have learned that YES, excuses can be valid! Woo-hoo!! How do you know? Here is the rule…
The next time you have an excuse, look around and check to see if anyone else has ever succeeded despite being in the same situation you are in. If nobody has ever succeed, your excuse is valid! However, it is rare.
Example…you are rude and condescending to people because you are tired. Being tired is your justifiable excuse for being a jerk! It’s not YOUR FAULT. Your rudeness is the fault of your tiredness. Phew! All good, right!!?? Nope. Why? Because there are thousands of people everyday, in locations all over the world, that are able to be kind and respectful to others despite being tired. Excuse failed. It’s lame. If others have succeeded anyway, your excuse needs some work.
Example…you cannot be successful after high school because you grew up in a low-income household and have few resources to succeed. Let me think…Jay-Z, Jim Carrey, and Shania Twain all grew up in low income families that struggled financially for years. Jim Carrey even spent a period of his life living out of his van. Shoot. I guess that excuse isn’t valid either.
Stop using your excuses as a crutch! Which brings me to my last point…
Reaching Your Full Potential
To reach your full potential, you have to eliminate excuses. It’s 100% essential to do so.
If I was honest with myself in high school, I would have had a 90 average. But instead, I chose to believe I wasn’t smart and blamed my laziness and poor grades on my intelligence. As a result, I wasn’t successful in school, and never realized my full potential.
What is your “GO-TO” excuse? I challenge you to be completely honest with yourself. Reveal your excuse, then trash it forever. It is the only way to climb higher.
I have learned that “GREATNESS IS ON THE OTHER SIDE OF YOUR EXCUSES.”
Use this week to get rid of your excuses forever. The best already have. Get better.
- Be sure to follow me on INSTAGRAM and TWITTER. Each day I will post an inspiring message…a thought for the day…to help push you towards success.
- Be sure to read my other leadership posts. Check back every Sunday for the next article that will challenge you and prepare you for a life of impact and success.
- My book, “Seeds of Excellence for Teens: 24 Life Principles For Those Who Want to Stand Out From The Crowd“, is available on Amazon.