Enough of the Excuses
Just… stop making excuses. Make it as simple as either you do or you don’t; you did or you didn’t.
Let’s address something that might have been eating away at many of us for some time now: the habitual creation of excuses. Even when these excuses sound genuine or reasonable, their value in our growth trajectory is zero. Remember, while some excuses may be valid in the immediate moment, they seldom play a beneficial role in our long-term narrative. Embracing this understanding is the first step towards a future of infinite potential and growth.
1. Embrace Discomfort:
Understanding the Role of Discomfort: Every challenge, uncertainty, or unfamiliar territory carries with it a certain degree of discomfort. It’s a natural reaction, our body’s way of signaling that we’re deviating from our norm. But what if we shifted our perspective to view discomfort not as a warning sign but as a signal for potential growth?
Taking Action: The next time you’re confronted with a task that’s outside your comfort zone — a new role at work, a leadership position, a challenging workout, or even just introducing yourself to a stranger — pay attention to your initial reaction. Is it to retreat, or to face it head-on? Start with small steps. Every little act of confronting discomfort compounds over time, transforming you into a resilient, adaptable, and fearless individual.
Discomfort is not your enemy. Rather, it’s an indicator that you’re pushing your boundaries. Every time you feel uneasy or out of your comfort zone, it’s a sign that growth is right around the corner. Think of it as a muscle — the more you exercise it, the stronger it becomes. This week, challenge yourself to do one thing that makes you slightly uncomfortable. Whether it’s public speaking, initiating a difficult conversation, or trying something new, embrace that feeling. Over time, you’ll begin to equate discomfort with personal development.
2. Extreme Accountability: If It’s Not Your Fault, It Still Is
Deciphering Accountability vs. Blame: At its core, accountability is about ownership — of actions, decisions, and their outcomes. It’s not about self-blame or being hard on oneself. Rather, it’s recognizing our role in a situation and learning from it.
Taking Action: Practice introspection. Whenever a situation goes wrong, take a moment to assess your role. Could you have communicated better? Was there a step you overlooked? Were there signs you ignored? By understanding and acknowledging your part, you empower yourself to make informed decisions in the future, nurturing growth and fortifying trust, both in yourself and from others.
We’ve all been there — something goes wrong, and our immediate reaction is to find a reason (or someone) to blame. But what if, instead of deflecting, we took extreme accountability? Even when it’s not directly our fault, there’s usually something we could have done differently. Taking responsibility not only aids in problem-solving but also empowers us to be in control of our actions and their consequences. Next time an issue arises, before pointing fingers, ask yourself, “What could I have done better?”
3. Care Deeply, But Detach Outcome from Identity
Balancing Passion with Detachment: Passion drives us and gives our endeavors meaning. However, a fine line exists between caring about an outcome and intertwining it with our self-worth. When our identity becomes too tied to our successes or failures, our emotional well-being becomes a rollercoaster.
Taking Action: Begin by setting clear boundaries between your tasks/goals and your sense of self. Celebrate achievements, but understand they enhance, not define, who you are. Similarly, failures offer lessons, not verdicts on your worth. Practice mindfulness or journaling to differentiate between your efforts and the outcomes. Over time, you’ll find peace in knowing that outcomes, good or bad, don’t define your essence.
Passion and commitment to a task or goal are admirable. It drives us forward and fuels our progress. However, it’s crucial to understand the difference between being invested in the outcome and letting the outcome define you. While it’s essential to care deeply about the results, tying your identity to them can lead to unnecessary stress and self-worth issues. Celebrate your achievements, learn from your failures, but remember — you are more than the sum of your outcomes.
As we wrap up this week’s insights, let’s commit to stopping the excuse-making cycle. Whether we acknowledge it or not, excuses only lead to a dead-end street filled with regret and stagnation. We all have the potential for greatness. And that potential is maximized when we embrace discomfort, take extreme accountability, and invest deeply without letting outcomes define our worth.
Stay empowered and keep building fortitude!
Colin Jonov, Founder & CEO Athletic Fortitude
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