Have you ever wanted something but let time pass by and make an excuse to opt out on life? Do you blame your lack of progress on others instead of taking the responsibility for your own actions? Making excuses is common in adults. We go to the level of blaming our kids, our partners or a variety of circumstances for not doing/getting what we want. While excuses are common are they healthy? Most would say that they are not healthy because they are present an untruth. Only the truth shall set you free, right? Here, we explore the 5 most common consequences that excuses have on our lives.
1. Missed Opportunity
Recently, I have run across several really exciting photo contests that I would like to be a part of. I have made excuses about the legitimacy of photo contest itself, questioning my own talent and blaming not having the time to produce the submissions. In truth, I’m just scared of being judged. I have people tell me all the time that I don’t look nervous or asking me how I can be so confident in front of people. The truth is that I am nervous (shaking in my skin usually) in front of a crowd of people. Large groups of people freak me out and I have no desire to place myself in social situations where I don’t know people. These all lead to missed opportunities because I let time pass by or I don’t go to that social function because of my lack of desire to ‘deal’ with people.
2. No SELF-Accountability
When we make goals, we have certain things that we have to do to achieve these goals. When we make excuses we take the blame off of ourselves and place it on another person, a circumstance or a mindset. We rarely ever say that we don’t want to go to the party because we can’t stand that group of people. We usually make the excuse that we are tired, that work has been very stressful lately or that the kids haven’t really seen me in a while. We blame our energy level, our jobs, and our kids. These things are to be blamed rather than ourselves to be accountable for.
3. Loss of Vision
Getting lost in excuses also makes us lost in our vision. For example, when we are trying to lose weight we blame time, prior engagements and energy levels for our non-progress. When we start using those excuses frequently, we start to lose the vision of ourselves being 20 pounds lighter with more energy. We lose sight of the version of yourself that we wanted to become because staying the same is familiar and comfortable. Change is difficult but if you let excuses win you add another hurdle to the obstacles already ahead.
4. Attract the Wrong People
When making an excuse, we are trying to deflect something that we don’t want to do or have refused to do. Rarely, do we ever think of these excuses and their consequences because we made the excuse to avoid any consequence in the first place? When we make excuses we attract the wrong people because these people will buy your excuses and you will not have a circle around you that will keep you accountable. People don’t call each other out on their excuses because they make excuses themselves. We get comfortable with this because we are able to proclaim that we would love to do this and that but have every excuse in the book as to why we are not doing this or that.
5. After Time, Excuses Become Your Reality
When we keep making the same excuses repeatedly, the excuses become our reality. If you don’t want to do something, the only response that is required is a simple ‘no’. Instead, we believe that we can’t do something because our kids need us in that specific moment. We don’t call our mom because she is always too busy. We don’t go to the gym because it smells funny. We can’t start that new hobby because we don’t have time. All of these are excuses that we believe as reality. We don’t call our mom because we don’t want to. We don’t go to the gym because we want to lay on the couch instead. We don’t start that hobby because we really don’t want to. Accept reality as it is and life becomes more simple.
Excuses are used all the time to spare someone’s feelings, to avoid embarrassment or a long list of other reasons in life. When we are truthful it may hurt someone’s feelings but you are free from guilt and have the freedom to check your Facebook anytime you want. When we stop making excuses we live a more authentic life allow us to be free to do what we want. People will know that you speak your mind regardless of the outcome. In the end, we make excuses to spare feelings, ours or someone else’s, and to avoid conflict. The act of an excuse is a lie and when you avoid lying to yourself or someone else you avoid any conflict that you are responsible for because the truth sets you free.