Do you approach a new week with the best intentions? And then as the week starts and things get busy and difficult, you become full of excuses for not doing what you said we were going to do?
Perhaps we call our excuses ‘good reasons’, so that we don’t feel so bad about following through. But at the end of the day they are just excuses.
Whether it’s goals of getting to the gym, eating better, finding time for a walk, going to bed earlier, waking up earlier to be more productive, you name it, we find excuses for not doing it.
You’ve heard yourself say it: I didn’t because I was just too busy at work, I didn’t because I was too tired, I didn’t because I got caught up in a meeting…and so it goes. And before you know it, another week where you didn’t accomplish what you wanted to goes by and we do it all over again.
So why do we make so excuses to things we say we want? Generally it’s because we haven’t placed enough importance on our wants and we get tangled up in our ingrained habits that are easy and familiar, we don’t have to think about it, we just do it.
But as the saying goes: “You will never find time for anything. If you want time you must make it” – Charles Buxton
So how do we break free from making so many excuses? Here’s 5 tips that will help:
1) Think of your success as affecting more than just yourself: Often we think of our goals as affecting us alone, but the reality is that we don’t live in a bubble, so whatever we do in our lives impacts others in our lives, especially those closest to us. Think about how much taking care of yourself with exercise and good food impacts those around you: would you be more energetic, more focused, happier and more positive around your kids, partner, friends, coworkers? Would you also be an amazing example for them?
2) Stop blaming others. This is something we all do when things get hard. We start blaming everything and everyone in our lives except taking responsibility for our own choices. For example, do you remember ever using your kids, your boss, your partner, your commute, your alarm… as an excuse for not doing something you said you were going to do? There is something powerful that happens when you commit to taking full responsibility for not doing what you said you would.
3) Visualize your success. This is huge, but most people don’t take advantage of it. What you want always need to align with our actions, if it doesn’t we will continue to struggle. How can we say we want to be fit and then continue to skip our workouts? How can we say we want to eat healthier and never go grocery shopping or continue choosing burgers and fries for every meal? t’s just not possible!
Close your eyes and ask: what version of myself do I want to be today? What does that version of me look like? What choices does that person make? What does that that version of me feel? Visualize yourself going through the motions that bring you closer to success and the visualize accomplishing your goals.
4) Set small goals. Don’t attempt to change everything in your life in one week. Most of us don’t do well with this approach. It only ends in frustration because you have gone way beyond your comfort zone without allowing yourself to see the fruits of your efforts, and you end up giving up before you can even see them. Instead, commit to 1 change per week and once you’ve implemented that and feel that it is doable, give yourself a new challenge to take on.
5) Stop comparing yourself to others. We are all guilty of this, and it is so damaging! We all have a different history, had a different upbringing, experienced different things and therefore what comes easily for you may not come easy for me and vice versa. You also have no idea where the person that you are comparing yourself to came from or how long they may have struggled to get to where they are today. Focus on you alone and celebrate every small win, because every small win is actually a stepping stone for something greater!
I hope that some of these resonated with you and they help you take more action!
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