Stop Making Excuses – You Owe It To Yourself

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“It is not in the stars to hold our destiny but in ourselves.” – William Shakespeare.

Yes, you are responsible for your own destiny.  Every decision that you make, every action that you take, will shape your future.  Unfortunately, many people are still not accepting responsibility for their own lives.  Instead, they blame others when things don’t go their way.  Similar to how current (DC) in an electrical circuit takes the path of least resistance, people also move in the same manner by default.  

A prime example of this could be seen with the recent strikes covered by the media urging McDonald’s and Amazon to increase the minimum wage for their workers.  Rather than working for a promotion, or going to school to receive a higher-education and degree, these individuals took the path of least resistance by avoiding additional responsibilities to improve personally and professionally.  Instead, they prefer to join forces with others who share similar concerns in hopes of getting a raise.  

Trust me, this is the wrong approach and it’ll get you nowhere.  Successful conglomerates, such as the two mentioned above, are acutely aware that the economy is still quite weak and that there are literally millions of other individuals waiting to get these jobs, if you’re not interested.  

Look, I’m not heartless and I do believe that people should be paid more in an effort to keep up with inflation.  But rather than leave your destiny in the hands of others, you must take control of your own future.  If you’re not happy with your current job, you owe it to yourself to find another job.  This goes for any aspect of your life (e.g. relationships, health, fitness, etc.).  Remember, the amount of energy you put into making excuses and blaming others for your shortcomings is wasted resources that could have been used elsewhere.  

So how do you shift your paradigm in an effort to get out of this rut?

Here are 5 simple steps to help you achieve this feat:

Get Clarity:

To troubleshoot any concern requires clarity.  You must be clear on what the issue is, along with the facts associated with those concerns.  In addition, you must also be clear about who you are as an individual and where you want to go in life.  Like most bad habits, the first step to conquering unwanted rituals is to recognize that you have a problem.  So if you’re constantly making excuses for your trials and tribulations, you need to realize that this is a problem that must be stopped.  

Focus On Solutions:

Once you’ve achieved clarity, the next step is to focus on the solution(s) to those concerns.  Don’t waste resources on things that don’t help you resolve the issue at hand.  Instead, focus your energy on finding the answers to your problems.  Personally, I recommend writing down at least 3 potential solution to every problem and prioritize those items based on your goals and objectives.  

To illustrate, let’s go back to the example above pertaining to the worker’s strike for increasing minimum wage.  Instead of wasting resources striking, you could focus on these 3 areas for improving your situation: 

1.  Find a new job that’ll pay you more for similar skills since you now have experience under your belt.

2.  Ask your workplace what you can do to increase your pay and then take on those additional responsibilities to show them that you’re worth the raise.

3.  Go back to school to get a higher-education and degree in an effort to land a higher paying job in a different industry that you actually enjoy.

Stop Procrastinating:

After you’ve written down and prioritized your potential solutions, you must stop procrastinating.  Simply put, you must take ACTION toward implementing your solution(s) in an effort to resolve those concerns efficiently.  Regardless if it’s small steps, at least you’re moving in the right direction – forward.  

Stay Confident & Positive:

If you’re not confident in yourself, or positive that your hard work will pay off, then you’ll most likely give up when facing adversity.  Therefore, it’s crucial that you remain positive, confident, and have faith in your abilities when all is said and done.  

Remember, if you don’t believe in yourself, who will?  

Exercise Regularly:

Last, but not least, exercise regularly.  Although this may seem off-topic, exercising regularly will actually help you with all of the steps highlighted above.  Not only will exercising help you with clarity, focus, and confidence but also give you the energy required to act on your goals.  Plus, exercising also releases endorphin that’ll help you remain positive and optimistic because stress and depression levels are reduced.  So make an effort to exercise regularly and you’ll soon discover the tremendous impact that it has on achieving goals and success.

To end this post, I leave you with a quote from Bob Wall who wisely stated that “the one common denominator in every mess that you find yourself in is you.”  

So stop making excuses and start making positive changes today – you owe it to yourself!