Excuses are insidious little beasts. They provide convenient, if not somewhat accurate, reasons we tell ourselves – or others – why we can’t accomplish certain tasks necessary to build our business. From the ubiquitous “too busy” to “we’ve always done it this way,” excuses manifest themselves in many different forms. Despite the various excuses readily available to avoid uncomfortable and/or unpleasant business tasks, the outcome is always the same: stagnation.
The real problem with excuses is that they become a habit – a bad one. For example, often people will say they are “too busy” to do something without giving it any thought. The habit of making excuses to avoid difficult or challenging tasks creates a false sense of comfort that prevents growth.
Bad habits, however, can be broken and the habit of excuses is no different. The key is to respectfully challenge the person using the excuse – and that person may be the one in the mirror. Next time you hear an excuse, simply ask, “What do you mean by that?” This will cause the person using the excuse to not only think about what they are saying, but why they are saying it. For example, when someone says they are “too busy,” it usually means that the task really isn’t important to them. By giving pause to understand WHY someone is habitually using an excuse, it will begin to break the habit and stop stagnation.