You have a goal, a dream, something that you are striving for and almost without fail whatever you are chasing after comes with an excuse. We rarely every just dive into something headfirst admitting to our friends, family, even ourselves that we truly want what we are going after.
“I really want to get into that graduate school but I have had to work long hours, and I got really sick, so who knows what will happen.”
“I would love to win the National Championships but I had to travel and was out of routine a lot this year.”
“It would be the best thing ever if the book I wrote got published but I also have school and it doesn’t really matter to me that much, books are lame.”
We make excuses to protect ourselves. If we fail, we think those excuses will soften the blow. You didn’t get that job but you didn’t really want it that bad any ways, you didn’t win a medal but you were sick the weeks leading up. In theory this makes sense – protecting yourself from the pain of failure – but in reality you’re doing yourself a disservice.
What would happen if you were just honest and didn’t use a single excuse?
First and fore most getting rid of those excuses is going to automatically increase your chances of success. Now you know that failure is something you cannot deflect so you will naturally work harder to avoid it. Even just putting an excuse out there is going to subconsciously allow the idea of failure leak into your mind. You don’t want this.
Making those excuses is a natural habit but what if we thought about it this way?
If everyone around you knows you were sick, you were traveling, you got injured, and then you failed, will they console you the same way that they would if you didn’t make any of the excuses? Sure, without any excuses to lean on failing might sting a little more at first but your friends and family will be right there beside you to take some of the sting away. If they don’t think it was that big of a deal to you, it won’t be as big of a deal to them.
On the flip side, if you succeed but you “didn’t really try that hard”, or it “didn’t matter that much to you” the celebration around your triumph will not be as great as it could be. When you know you tried your best, you worked as hard as possible, and made no excuses, victory will be that much sweeter. Everyone around you will be glowing with pride and excitement knowing that this is something you wanted wholeheartedly. If you carry those excuses with you, when you succeed it will be as if you happened upon that success rather than earning it. Sure your friends and family will be excited for you but it will become success “even though you were sick”,“even though you took time off.”
Failing will never be easy but If you’re going to do it you might as well give it everything you’ve got.