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The Opposite of Excuses

 

We, as humans, make excuses every day – and they have the capacity to cripple us.

But if excuses can cripple us, there must be a way to bring us back.

 

What is the opposite of an excuse?

 

I’ve found I make a lot of excuses – I find ways to justify skipping workouts or eating poorly.

The excuses I make are rarely based in facts – they are small lies I tell myself to feel better about not doing what I know I should.

An excuse, by definition, is pretty negative – it is “an explanation put forward to defend or justify a fault or offense.”

So in plain terms – you’ve done (or will do) something wrong, and you decide to convince yourself it was (or will be) right.

 

Why do we do this to ourselves?

 

Our excuses can cripple us because: we typically believe whatever we tell ourselves.

Henry Ford said, “Whether you think you can or think you can’t, you’re right.”

We are all living, breathing examples of self-fulfilling prophecies. We build our lives based on the vision we’ve set for ourselves.

When I tell myself I am too tired to get up early to work out, I am establishing this is a perfectly acceptable action in my life (and it is not).

When nothing earth-shattering happens when I’ve skipped one workout, I start to believe it is okay to skip workouts regularly (and it is not).

Every excuse we make tells us our unproductive actions are acceptable – this puts us into a negative spiral making it easier and easier to make excuses moving forward.

We need to break out of this spiral.

 

Which brings me to the opposite of excuses.

 

We are most apt to make excuses when we don’t have firm convictions for what we’re pursuing.

We need to establish why our actions matter.

We need REASONS – reasons are the opposite of excuses, but only if taken in the positive sense of the word.

If excuses justify not doing a task, reasons need to be our justification for doing said task.

The more reasons we have to do the right things, the less persuaded we’ll be to justify the wrong ones.

When our reasons to act outweigh our excuses, we control the narrative. We shape our story based on what we know is right, and we overpower the voice in our head telling us we can’t, or shouldn’t, or don’t need to.

There are a million reasons to do great things – we need to feed our mind with these reasons. If we don’t, we’ll be stuck listening to the excuses our brain comes up with and acting accordingly.

 

Why do you want to stay motivated?

 

What reasons do you have to do great things?

 

Make a list – even if it’s just in your head.
When your reasons for doing outweigh your excuses, you will have no problem finding the motivation necessary to accomplish your goals.

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Don’t Be Fooled – Your Resolutions Do Matter

I change my mind about New Years Resolutions all the time.

I’m human. I think I’m allowed.

new-year-resolution

So I don’t know if I’ll look back on this post favorably or wish my former self would not have released it.

Either way, all I can do is tell you how I feel about New Years Resolutions today, at this time.

I feel as though people are pretty down on New Years Resolutions. They roll their eyes or tell you how you’re not setting goals properly. They’ll laugh about your diet changes or tell you your gym membership is going to go to waste.

And I used to be one of those people.

A year ago, I published an article telling you how your New Years Resolutions were broken.

Two years ago, I said that resolutions aren’t working because they are too short-term.

I think the underlying message of both of these blogs was –

“Write better resolutions, or don’t write resolutions at all.” 

Today, I’m going to tell you why I think your New Years Resolutions actually matter more than you think – whether they are structured properly and well thought out or just a passing thought in your mind – They MATTER.

I’m going to tell you why I think you should make New Years Resolutions even if you fail in the first week of the New Year – why even the thought of making a change can have lasting effects on your life.

The reason is a message straight from my book, The Thinking Dilemma – your thoughts direct your actions, and your actions direct your outcomes.

Your thoughts are SO powerful.

Have you heard the term “Self-Fulfilling Prophecy?”

What this means is simply the more you think about something, the more likely it is to come true in your life.

So our thoughts literally come to life.

If our thoughts can lead to physical changes in our world, what’s wrong with using this New Year as a moment to direct our thoughts properly?

Given, we probably should be directing our thoughts at all times (or working on it) – but since most of us don’t, it sure seems like a good idea to me to do so in the form of New Years Resolutions.

Now, don’t get me wrong, I still think people need help writing better resolutions (feel free to refer to my tips from last year).

But the overarching theme is this:

Any action taken toward living a purpose-filled, intentional life is an action I can get behind. 

When people take responsibility and begin to make changes, great things can happen.

I think New Years Resolutions matter. They show we’re trying. They show intentionality. Maybe we’ll succeed. Maybe we’ll fail. Either way, I believe humanity improves when we take responsibility and we try.

If New Years needs to be the designated time to take control of my life and make a positive change, I’ll take it.

So go ahead, set short-term New Years Resolutions. Join a gym. Buy a couple books. Learn a new language. Whatever it is you’ve been thinking of doing, do it.

Because this blog isn’t about doing it right. This post is just about doing it – trying.

I’m not going to tell you that your resolutions are broken. I’m not going to coach you on setting better goals. I’m not even going to recommend you be more intentional throughout the year.

I’m going to stand behind you in full support of your resolutions. I’m going to encourage you to succeed. I’m going to help you any way I can.

Your resolutions matter – even if they’re only thoughts.

Because I believe your thoughts matter.

Let’s do it together.

Kyle

Oh, and if you do come up short, don’t be too hard on yourself either. It happens.

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