This was the tagline of Inko Creative Systems in 2019 when I enrolled for a writers training with them. It’s also part of the title of a New York Times bestseller written by Brian Tracy. Beyond this, it’s a mental model I have used to stay productive.
Anybody can give excuses
It takes nothing special to give excuses. It’s probably human to do so from time to time. Sometimes, we have genuine excuses. At other times we don’t but still, we give them. We give excuses as to why we can’t deliver on certain jobs. We give excuses about the kind of results we get. We give excuses about why we can’t do what is asked of us.
Sometimes, we do it to shield ourselves from accepting responsibility. We do it to explain why things didn’t go as planned. We also do it to create a soft landing for ourselves. But listen!
Anybody can give excuses but it takes strength of character not to – even when you can.
Your excuses are probably not unique to you. There are probably people who have better excuses than you do. The easiest way to be different is to refuse to be like everyone else. And that oftentimes will mean not making excuses. It will mean choosing the hard over the easy.
As Brian Tracy said, “Losers make excuses; winners make progress”
Without excuses, planning will be better
The moment you decide you will no longer give excuses, you’ll find yourself planning better. Not giving excuses places the onus on you. It seemingly puts your destiny on your shoulders. And what that will do to you is to make you a better and more careful planner.
And this is important because sometimes excuses are by-products of poor planning. So we set deadlines we can’t meet. We take up more tasks and responsibilities than we can effectively handle. We undercharge our clients only to find ourselves expending more resources. And on and on it goes.
When excuses are off the table, excellent planning takes centre stage. And excellent planning usually will yield excellent results; the kind you deserve and expect.
No excuse even you have genuine ones.
No excuse even when it is the convenient thing to do.
Decide this and you’ll soon find yourself making more headway than you can immediately imagine.