Excuses, Excuses, Excuses

The easiest thing in the world to find is an excuse.

We can literally find hundreds of them, not matter what the situation is.

I’m fat because I come from a long line of fat people, there is nothing I can do about it’s in my genes and you can’t fight nature.

I can’t do it today something more important came up, so I will leave to put it off until tomorrow, or maybe even next week.

I know I can do it, I just don’t think now is the right time, the markets are down, the weather is bad, it’s too cold, its too warm, my parents are visiting this weekend, my cat is ill, the dishwasher needs fixing, I need to buy a new car…

The list is endless!

I’m just as guilty of this as the next person too.

We have just moved into a new home, not all of our furniture has arrived yet, including my office furniture which will arrive next week.

Consequently every day when I think about completing the next module of my FAST Leadership course I try to tell myself, the office furniture doesn’t arrive til next week, so we should wait until then. But in reality I have everything I need to complete it right here.

But I am procrastinating, I’m looking for an excuse, one which will justify putting it off, delaying it until next week, taking the easy option.

This is not what successful people do!

Successful people ignore the excuses, they do what needs doing, and they do it now.

We have to train ourselves to recognise the difference between an excuse and a valid reason.

And it can’t be just something as simple as trying to figure out what is more important, because often it us who attach the importance to something, so we can make trivial things look and feel more important, especially if we really want to put something off.

Our brains are very powerful and when we have them focused on finding excuses and reasons why we should not do something today we can become very creative, and also very convincing.

Going back to my house move, we moved from Europe to Florida, and since we have arrived the weather has been absolutely glorious, great for sunbathing, great for spending time at the beach, pretty much great for anything expect staying inside.

But my wife, Carine, she ignored all that, she was completely focused on getting us moved in, and in doing it in the shortest amount of time possible. Because once it’s done she will have all the time she needs to spend at the beach, or doing those other things, the things she likes.

It would have been so easy for her to do it the other way round, arguing that the weather was good now, now is the time to be sunbathing, we can complete the moving in process, unpacking boxes etc., etc., when the weather is bad.

But taking that approach the task would have dragged on for weeks, maybe even months, as the weather here is pretty good all year round and especially in December.

But Carine prioritised getting the house done first, she made that more important than everything.

We have to do the same thing with our goals and the tasks we really want to achieve, we need to attach the highest importance to them and use them as the excuse for not doing all of the other things which whilst interesting, don’t really move us forward towards our goals.

So if you want to be successful, you need to be able to recognise excuses, those little time thief’s that steal away the time you could be spending on your goals and focus on making progress each and every day.

That is the quickest way to success, nothing was ever achieved in record time by putting it off until tomorrow!

Gordon Tredgold

#Leadership Principles