“Of all the people I know, you have suffered so much in your life. I’d give you an excuse to bail out any day,” a male friend once said to me.
From his perspective, my long list of physical challenges — from kidney disease to Celiac Disease — gave me a lifelong excuse card that would make me exempt from attaining success.
My thought on his comment? Well, isn’t that nice? No, that isn’t helpful. Bleah. Yuck. Give me a moment to wipe that thought from my mind.
This kind of thinking, the Excuse Card, sounds surprisingly similar to the word, “Resistance,” which is the topic of a book a friend and presentation coach Dr. Michelle Mazur recommended me to read. The book is The War of Art by Steven Pressfield, and the primary focus of the first section of the book is resistance. Resistance is that excuse card, the many various rhymes, reasons, and rationalizations we give to ourselves on a daily basis to keep us from engaging in the activities, dreams, and passionate work of our lives. Rather than doing that work, we often chase other activities which present less fear, superficial but acceptable gains, give us the illusion of busyness and productivity, yet distance us from our ultimate goals.
Pressfield’s book is a powerful “kick in the ass” for helping you overcome your personal resistances, so I’ll refer you to check out his book if you want to get the big picture on identifying key ways you allow resistance to keep you from attaining your deepest wants in life. For this post, I’d like to bring you in a little closer to my world by giving away my top five ways I deal with excuses in my life.
Do yourself a favor, and steal these. I give you permission.