post written by: Marc Chernoff

20 Bad Excuses Holding Good People Back


20 Excuses Standing Between You and What You Want

Live by choice, not by chance.  Make changes, not excuses.  Be motivated, not manipulated.  Work to excel, not compete.  Choose to listen to your inner voice, not the jumbled opinions of everyone else.

Over the years, likely without your conscious knowledge, you have adopted self-limiting beliefs that are quietly sabotaging your best efforts for personal growth.  If you pay close attention to your self-talk, these beliefs will reveal themselves in the form of excuses.

Truth be told, if you really want something, you will find a way.  If you don’t, you will find an excuse… and then you will live with that excuse every day of your life.

This is precisely what makes so many of us unhappy.

Angel and I speak with hundreds of coaching clients and blog subscribers (subscribe here) every month, and this one self-defeating ailment always rears its ugly head eventually – excuses, excuses, excuses.  And I’m not above the excuses either.  I catch myself making them sometimes too.  But that’s the key – we have to catch ourselves before our excuses become hopeless regrets.

So let this be your wake-up call.

Stop making excuses for why you can’t get it done and start focusing on all the reasons why you must make it happen.

NO more negativity.  NO more laziness.  NO more quick fixes.  NO more blaming others.  NO more “I’ll do it tomorrows.”  NO MORE OF THESE EXCUSES:

  1. “It’s too late.” – It’s never too late to live a life that makes you proud.  If you don’t learn anything else from this post, learn that.  We get one shot at this.  There’s no age limit on changing your course, and to settle in and be stuck in a life that isn’t authentic is a tragic waste.   Honestly, it’s never too late or too early to be who you are capable of being.  There’s no time limit – you can simply start and stop whenever you want.  You can change or stay the same.  You can make the best or the worst of it.  It’s up to you, so make the best of it.  Do things that startle you.  Feel things you’ve never felt before.  Spend time with people who help you grow.  Live a life you’re proud of.  And if you find that you’re not, have the courage to make a change.
  2. “I’m not good enough yet.” – Nonsense!  Do your best and don’t be afraid to make mistakes.  If you are making mistakes, then you are making new things, trying new things, learning, living, pushing yourself, changing yourself, and changing the world for the better.  We can’t make anything valuable without making mistakes.  Not a painting, not a relationship, not a career, not a life.  If you wait until you have it all figured out to try, you will be waiting forever.
  3. “I need approval first.” – Don’t be scared to step out of line.  It’s OK to go off the beaten path, as long as you know why going a different way is right for you.  Some people may resent the freedom that you create in your life when you choose to be true to yourself.  If you come across these people, ignore them and carry on.  Only when you require no approval from outside yourself can you own yourself.  If you’re being true to yourself and it isn’t enough for the people around you, change the people around you.  (Read The Road Less Traveled.)
  4. “I don’t want to be judged.” – Most people are judging you far less than it seems.  The truth is, while you’re busy worrying about what others think of you, they’re busy worrying about what you think of them.  Crazy?  Yes, but true.  The good news is this knowledge instantly frees you to let loose and do more of what YOU want.  And while doing so, you’ll also liberate others to do the same.
  5. “I don’t deserve it.” – There are two versions of this excuse.  The first makes you think that you are not worthy of something beautiful like love, respect, success and so forth.  The second makes you feel that you are unfairly targeted by life’s difficulties.  Either way, this excuse ties you up and holds you down.  It’s time to let this one go!  When you catch yourself wondering “Why me?”, ask “Why not me?”  Remember, in the grand scheme of things, you are just the same as everyone else; neither nature, nor God, displays favoritism or unfairness.  So learn to accept both the good and the bad that falls on your plate with grace.
  6. “I have way too much to lose.” – In the end, you will not regret the things you have done nearly as much as the things you have left undone.  It’s always better to be left with a few “oh wells,” than a bunch of “what ifs.”  It’s better to have a lifetime full of experiences and mistakes you learned from, rather than a heart full of regrets and empty dreams.  Someday you will want to look back at your life and say, “I can’t believe I did that!” instead of, “Gosh, I wish I would have…”
  7. “There’s just no point.” – Not with that attitude there isn’t.  A statement like this is self-defeat at it’s worst, and yet I hear it so often.  Snap out of it!  There is a point… The point is you’re helping yourself and others.  The point is you’re doing something positive.  The point is you’re taking action and trying.  The point is you’re not living in premature self-defeat.  You are taking your own ideas from concept to actualization.  You’re bringing value to the world.  Even if no one sees it, you can have the satisfaction of knowing you did the best you could.
  8. “It’s too hard.” – Almost everything worth doing is hard.  Think about it.  When was the last time “easy” had a huge payoff for you?  In life, the hardest thing and the right thing are often the same thing.  You can’t underestimate a person who always works hard.  Be that person.  Because you don’t get what you wish for; you get what you work for.
  9. “I’m unlucky.” – Not true.  Other people are NOT more lucky than you.  Pure luck is a myth.  If someone is “lucky” they are doing stuff behind the scenes you’re not seeing.  Taking action and simply doing something instead of making excuses will do wonders for your “luck.”  Ultimately, luck happens when preparation meets opportunity.
  10. “I have too much baggage from my past.” – There comes a time when you have to choose between turning the page and closing the book.  Some stories need to end before new ones can begin.  Life is too short to spend at war with yourself.  Practice acceptance and forgiveness.  Letting go of the past is your first step to happiness today.  (Angel and I discuss this in detail in the “Adversity” chapter of 1,000 Little Things Happy, Successful People Do Differently.)
  11.  “It wasn’t supposed to be like this to begin with.” – When we resist reality, we are imprisoned by it.  Period.  The secret to happiness and peace is letting every situation be what it is, instead of what you think it should be, and making the best of it.  Over time you will find that life isn’t necessarily any easier or harder than you thought it was going to be; it’s just that the easy and the hard aren’t exactly the way you had anticipated, and don’t always occur when you expect them to.  This isn’t a bad thing; it makes life interesting.  With a positive attitude you will almost always be pleasantly surprised.
  12. “It’s out of my control.” – You cannot control everything that happens to you; you can only control the way you respond to what happens.  In your response is your power.
  13. “With my disabilities (or circumstances), it’s impossible.” – Nothing is impossible.  Josh Blue is a hilarious stand up comic with cerebral palsy.  Nick Vujicic is a world-renowned preacher and motivational speaker who doesn’t have any arms or legs.  Kyle Maynard doesn’t have arms or legs either, and he’s an ESPY Award-winning mixed martial arts athlete, a motivational speaker, and known for becoming the first quadruple amputee to ascend Mount Kilimanjaro without the aid of prosthetics.  There are artists who create with their mouths, runners who win races on artificial legs, brilliant writers whose fingers never touch the keyboard and a host of other successful individuals with physical and mental disabilities who refuse to let their circumstances hold them back.
  14. “I can’t commit right now.” – Fair enough, you have a lot on your plate.  But when can you commit?  Don’t use this excuse to push something aside forever.  If it’s genuinely interesting, look at your calendar and ask “When can I commit?” and put yourself on a productive path.  And if you don’t want to do it, be honest and admit you’re not interested.  People will always respect honesty over being strung along.  And you will feel less stressed with unnecessary obligations too.
  15. “My kids (or family) take up too much of my time.” – No doubt, balancing kids (or family) with any kind of substantial personal goal is tough.  At the time of this writing, Angel and I have a newborn son, our own business, and several open projects in queue.  It’s a balancing act, but it’s doable.  If we can do it, you can too.  It requires self-control and maximum use of productive rituals and disciplines.  Even so, at the end of the day you may feel shattered sometimes.  Keep it up; you’ll build endurance.  This endurance doesn’t just make you a more effective goal achiever; it allows you to enjoy family time that much more too.
  16. “I’m comfortable right now.” – The most common and harmful addiction in the world is the draw of comfort.  Why pursue greatness when you’ve already got 324 channels and a recliner?  Just pass the chip dip and forget about your grand plans.  NO!  The truth is, growth begins at the end of your comfort zone.  Stepping outside of your comfort zone will put things into perspective from an angle you can’t grasp now, and open doors of opportunity that would otherwise not exist.
  17. “No one understands me.” – Everyone has their own life to worry about; everybody is busy.  At the end of the day, no one has the time or energy to figure anyone else out.  If it really matters to you that someone understands you, simply communicate and make it easy for them to do so.  Quit playing games and beating around the bush.  Say what you mean and mean what you say.  (And remember that it’s not necessary that everyone understands and agrees with you all the time.)
  18. “Nobody cares about what I care about.” – Can you imagine what would happen if everyone behind a good cause took on this attitude?  We’d never have any charitable organizations, fuel-efficient cars, health breakthroughs, peace efforts, literacy drives, etc.  Forget about everyone else for a moment.  Care about something because it’s important.  Take a stand.  If you truly care, then become a champion of the cause and help others understand why you care so much, whether they agree with you or not.  (Read Choose Yourself!)
  19. “I’ve already lost too much.” – The truth is, everything will be okay in the end.  If it’s not okay, it’s not the end.  We’ve all gone through some hard times, and you, personally, will likely go through more hard times in the future too.  But it’s worth it.  It builds character and teaches necessary lessons.  I can trace some of the best stuff in my life right now to things that were really hard when I was going through them.  So when things seem like they are impossible, or you feel like you are never going to feel better, just know that you will eventually look back in amazement at how far you have come.  Yes, it’s going to be okay.
  20. “I can’t go on without those who are gone.” – This final point is indeed a tough one.  You have to remember, though, if someone comes into your life and has a positive impact on you, but for some reason they can’t stay, it doesn’t make sense to mourn forever.  Instead, be thankful that your paths crossed and that they somehow made you happy, even if it was just for a short while.  Life is change.  People really do come and go.  Some come back, some don’t, and that’s okay.  And just because one person leaves, doesn’t mean you should forget about everyone else who’s still standing by your side.  Continue to appreciate what you have, and smile about the memories.

Afterthoughts

Now think about it: If I eavesdropped on your self-talk, would I hear statements that empower personal growth and happiness, or statements that refute it?

The next time you decide to unclutter your life and clean up your space, start with your intellectual space by clearing out the old excuses and negative self-talk you often recite to yourself.

The floor is yours…

What would you add to the list?  What kind of negative self-talk gets in your way?  What’s one self-defeating excuse you need to stop making?  Share your thoughts with us by leaving a comment below.

Photo by: Chiara Vitellozzi

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38 Comments

  • This article is a great reminder for me to stay on the right track. In the spirit of honest self-assessment in the path of becoming a better person, I’d like to share some of the points that I am/had been working on.

    The issue that keeps coming up in my life is #17 - the feeling that no one understands me. Which is not true. I know that I can’t share everything with everyone around me, but for each issue I have there’s a person that I can discuss it with. And for the odd thoughts, I always have my diary. It’s not so much that I want people to understand my issues, it’s more of feeling annoyed that some people just don’t realize how different other people are from them and they don’t treat them accordingly.

    Anyway, I realize that I’m doing that exact same thing by expecting other people to focus on my issues, and not let them be whatever they are. For this, I need a constant reminder!

    Also, as parent, #15 is a challenge for me. I know that when I put my well-being as a priority I could give back a lot more to other people, but sometimes the “urgency” of taking care of my toddler just keep adding up and I end up neglecting myself. I’m getting better at this, but a reminder now and then helps a lot.

    Thank you for your blog posts, your YouTube videos, your book, and all that you do.

  • My worst self-talk tends to be along the lines of “I can’t do this.” I’ve always been shy so usually this relates to some social situation. Like the new class I started last week at church only to find out I’ll have to write and share an autobiography. I felt sick. Eventually reminded myself that everyone in the class has to do it and that I survived all the crazy “team-building” exercises I’ve been through at work and in college over the years. No more negativity and excuses for me. This time I’m going to embrace the exercise and actually try to enjoy it.

  • Fear is the basis for my biggest excuses.

    I long ago learned a little fear is a good thing- am now retired from a 20 year career of fighting (boxing, kickboxing, and mixed martial arts) but fear of being emotionally hurt or failing had hindered my relationships and made it easier to stay in a job I wasn’t passionate about rather then risk a change.

    I’ve learned to trust and love again after a 13 year marriage ended in divorce and a subsequent relationship crashed and burned, and am planning on proposing to the love of my life in September.

    I am on the brink making a career change, getting into Personal Training after 20 years in the Collection Industry- overcoming the self-doubt and the fear that “it’s too late for me”. It’s time to start doing something I love, even if it doesn’t pay huge financial dividends, helping others will be more rewarding than any of the bonus checks I’ve cashed.

    Reading a post from your site or a few pages of your book is always uplifting, enjoyable, and nearly always has me nodding along and I appreciate everything you guys do! Keep on keeping on, you are inspirational and help many people every day I’m sure!

  • Hi guys!

    Gotta say, I’m impressed. A lot of personal development stuff / posts like this are kinda useless… but this was an exception for sure!

    You went into just the right amount of detail, plenty of tweetable quotes, and easy to read.

    As an aspiring personal development blogger, I learned from this in a variety of ways. Keep up the great work!

  • I struggle with the one that states “I am not good enough.” That keeps me from doing a lot of things. I somehow think that one day I will be magically good enough and do everything. I know I need to start taking small steps.

  • One of the very best articles I’ve read in the recent past. There are so many important reminders here.

    Though I loved all the points, point 20 has made an impact to my heart which I can’t explain at the moment.

    Also… “I don’t want to be judged”/”the fear of getting bad judgement” and “Fear of failure”/”What people think after that” are my weaknesses.

    Thanks for your effort and the wonderful article.

  • Both #1 and #2 were my “blockades”. But I finally did it…opened up a little booth in an antique mall, yes I did! I’m 67 years old, retired from a 32-year stint with one company sitting behind a desk all day.

    After retirement, there was no time to follow my dreams as I was caring for an older son with a terminal illness while also helping out my best friend who was going through chemo for non Hodgkins Lymphoma. Both my son and best friend passed away within 8 months of each other. Next, my significant other was diagnosed with an aggressive prostate cancer just 8 months later. That was 4 years ago.

    But, about 7 months ago I decided it was NOT too late, and even though I wasn’t yet “good enough” to open that little booth…I did! I “rescue” old pieces and re-store, re-finish, re-purpose them - kinda what I did for myself! I’m not the most talented out there, but I do okay and I love what I’m doing. It is my therapy, my relaxation, my passion.

    Thank you for urging everyone out there to follow their dreams and/or overcome their fears.

  • “We have to catch ourselves before excuses become hopeless regrets”

    Man, I wish I had that knowledge about 10 months ago. I have made excuses that ultimately lead me to making decisions resulting in major regrets.

    This has been one tough period and one hard lesson in the importance of decision making for the right reasons.

    tough lesson: Choosing the path of least resistance may well lead to a path of maximum regret…

    Understanding this will hopefully help in the future.

  • This article holds many truths, especially the idea that none of us struggles alone.

    I’d like to respond in particular to #13: As a blind teacher and disability activist, I’ve heard plenty of people use their impairments as excuses not to pursue the life they want. People who experience disability later in life often feel that they can never be “as good as they were before.” But the idea that any of us has an inherently perfect form to live up to, a self that never struggles, is a myth. We cannot return to this super-independent self - this autonomous creature who never needs help - because this self does not exist.

    In the same line of thinking, people often use disability as a kind of “inspiration generator” - clinging to the mantra, “The only disability in life is a bad attitude.” It’s important to make a distinction here: disabilities and the limitations experienced by disabled people aren’t the result of bad attitudes. As the disabled Australian comedian and writer Stella Young says, “No amount of smiling at a flight of stairs will make them turn into a ramp.”

    So, when including disability in a list of excuses that hold people back, it’s just as important not to further the idea of disabled superheroes. When people subscribe to the idea of “overcoming” disability through extreme “grit” and effort, they often devalue the rights and accommodations that disabled people need to integrate fully into our society.

    It is important that people learn to live with their disabilities - just as they live with their griefs, loves, and other resources. Disability is another way of living in the world, and it certainly presents difficulties. And like any human experience, disability is another opportunity for us to recognize and support one another in debunking the fable of the independent human heart.

  • I would add the biggest lie of “I just don’t want to.” It’s the easy way out and fogs the true wants and needs of your goal(s). If you say it enough, start to believe it, others will as well, and then you aren’t responsible for quitting.

  • I am quite happy being in #16 right now. Comfort gives strength and time to regroup and grow strong. I have come through many hits in my life and occasionally I need to recover. Surprisingly finding comfort also reveals a new answer. Comfort gives quiet time, is restorative. My life is not always about waking up each day with an agenda to complete, goals to fulfill, changes to make. Sometimes the goal is the calm mind. When I moved to where I am now, I jokingly said I did it because I wanted to see what bored felt like. It’s been over 6 years and my seeking comfort and rejecting conflict has been much more rewarding. And surprisingly has revealed new path ways. Comfort is not always bad.

    Your overall point of #16 is important though. So maybe a better way to describe #16 is “shut down”. Comfort is not about powering off, it is about regrouping in a dynamic mind. There is no yesterday and tomorrow is not here yet, what is wrong being happy with where one is at this present moment.

  • With so much evidence that suggests that we do indeed live more than once I don’t understand why more writers don’t embrace the idea. I do believe we should live as if we only live once because after all who really knows. But I just think it’s a bit short sighted to constantly preach this whole “you only get one shot” idea - to me there’s got to be more. I don’t think any of us will learn all the lessons we need to learn in a mere 80 years and that’s if we are lucky. Take someone who died at 18. I mean, that’s it? Now you spend the rest of your time in eternity….doing what exactly? Just some food for thought…

  • Number 15 was interesting to me. My children are grown, so a lot of this issue is “resolved” for me. I remember learning that my first priority was my family, and I knew taking care of them was what I wanted to do the most. At the same time, I learned that using them as an excuse wasn’t healthy for them or for me and I had to avoid that inclination.

    Yes, life’s a balancing act, and that discussion with myself was repeated many times. I also learned that life wasn’t supposed to be easy, and I needed to continually embrace the challenge. After all these years (more than 70), me, myself, and I are still having that conversation.

    You are right with number 6 (and the other points as well!). It’s better to have a lifetime of experiences than regrets (what its).

    I love your column, and I love the comments from your younger readers. You and they give me hope for the future. Thank you, all of you who post here.

  • Happy Monday Marc and Angel.
    Loving the insight here. Each point resonates with me, some more than the others of course.
    Thank You.

  • First of all congratulations to you and Angel on your newborn son!!! Your life journey is about to change is so many beautiful ways!! Please remember, even when things are tough with the newborn, it’s ALL good and you are right where you are suppose to be!!

    I start my day reading your posts then forward them to our daughters (21,25). I am grateful that I came across your site some years ago…thank you for your insight your words touch so many lives in a very positive way!! Many blessings to you and your family.

    With gratitude, Jean

  • Great article and feedback. I’d like to offer some alternate perspectives on some of the points:

    1. It is too late. Yes it is! You will never be 17 and be able to ask “Miss Perfect” or “Mister Wonderful” to the prom. Its gone. You will never get to go back and change it. But you can change today and every tomorrow coming to you.

    If you are thinking ” I can’t” more than likely you mean “I choose not to.”

    2. A lot of these points can be lumped together under a broader point I call “I am not ready and that makes me fell scared, worried, and not confident.” Well guess what, no one else was, is or will be either. In life, there is only limited amount of preparation you can make, have or learn. Why? Because everything is changing.

    My point: What are you unprepared to do, but still want to do? Focus there.

    3. Judgment. The cruelest judge in the universe is your own fearful mind. Who beats you down over previous failures? You do. Who finds fault in every one of your efforts? You do. The only person you can’t run away from is yourself. So silence the inner critic. How? When the voice says, “You can’t. You’ll fail again. You don’t deserve it. Etc.” Respond real quickly with this thought “Prove to me that is guaranteed to happen THIS time, and do it right now.” Try it. When I do it my mind will literally go blank for a few seconds from the force of the response.

    4. Luck. Lucky breaks almost never happen when you are prepared. How many of us can remember a time when we had a golden opportunity, but talked ourselves out of it? I win contests all the time just because I am willing to enter and take the chance. People tell me all the time how “lucky” I am. But my secret is that I know its a numbers game, and the more times you play, the more times you will win. Its math over myth.

    5. Time. If you watch on hour of TV a day, you have time to commit to another project. Period.

    6. The balancing act of work and life. The day someone looks me in the eye and tells me they spent too much time with their kids, I’ll give them 100$. The day I read “He loved the office” on a tombstone, I’ll join the circus.

  • Ricardo Barreto Yépes
    August 4th, 2014 at 11:46 am

    Hi! My problem is from the beginning of the day because I don’t know what to do… I mean it, I don’t know what to do the rest of my life. I’m 61 and I lost the way because I do not know what I want. I have not a “pension” and I do not know what to do for living. I need to start again. Thanks a lot for these ideas.

  • Love this site! Always looking for something to motivate my 90 year old mom. She moved her out of her home to an independent senior living center to be close to me after my dad passed. I know it’s difficult for her, but she’s so unhappy. She wants to go “home” and just can’t let go of the past. Even though I’m not walking in her shoes, I feel she’s missing out on so much. She’s in perfect health and has no disabilities which is remarkable for 90. When I show her this website she says it doesn’t apply to her because she’s so old? How do I help her move forward and not focus only on what she had in the past?

  • 16 is the one for me. I have a 25 year history of depression and anxiety, grounded in being bullied as a child. Never good enough, lots of critical self talk, and lack of confidence killed me.
    I retreated into a bubble of depression. No one knew what was going on inside. The bubble protected me but it trapped me with my self thoughts and fear to try anything that could rock the boat.

    Last year I started horse riding lessons. I am 53 years old and rode as a child. I was scared, totally out of my comfort zone, unfit, unbalanced… But now I have my own horse, I’m fit and active, and have beaten depression now for 3 months. Sure it’s been scary. But I felt it was do it or just die. I challenged my brain to do things I’d never done before, horse trekking in the forest and the beach. I got a new car and a horse trailer and we go everywhere together. My family are amazed and so am I.

    My negative self talk, I challenge it, I say is that a fact or a fiction, if fiction then I argue with it and it disappears into a poof of smoke. I call my negative self talk, ” moaning Minnie”. Minnie is quite nice to me now, she has become my friend but I have to keep her in check sometimes. So to those with depression, I hope these words will sow a seed for you.

  • I love your words, it serves as motivation for me when I’m frustrated.

    Seriously, I love all your writing. You are wonderful.

  • Abdallah salum massoud
    August 4th, 2014 at 11:59 pm

    Hi, thanks for another fantastic post. I’m struggling with many of these, and I’m making progress.

  • Thank you so much! Such a great blog post!

  • I especially resonate with no.1 bad excuse, so much so I’ve named my blog with that motto that “it’s never too late”. You’ve got a cool blog, I just found it! Thanks

  • Definitely one of your best posts so far!

    I think everyone should read this list from time to time; simply becoming aware of these excuses will help people take a step towards overcoming them.

  • Thank YOU. I have used most of those excuses over the years. Now I don’t even think about them. I just get on with whatever I want to do.

    It has taken 43 years as an adult to stop making excuses and for the rest of my life I am a do-er rather than a oneday-er

  • Wonderfully affirming. Two agents gave tentative nod (”Send four chapters and synopsis”) — yet I’ve been swamped with concerns that delay mailing my work. Your top comment rouses to action, and as always I’m grateful for your insights. I share your link in every writing workshop I lead.

  • I enjoyed this article very much. Very eye opening in many regards.

    One thing I’d like to debate, however, is #13 - about disabilities.

    It’s not fair to some of us who have major disabilities to do comparisons of those who have achieved great things. I have medical disabilities that sap me of my energy for days at a time. I also have learning challenges.

    I’m 58. I went back to school at age 42 and was able to complete my degree in Spanish taking two classes at a time. I had earned an associates of science during that time also. I had accommodations, but I did it. So what follows is not an excuse to make excuses, but a line of reasoning that lends to my questioning of # 13.

    My dream was to go to medical school. That IS impossible. I would not physically be able to meet the demands of such a program. It took me 8 years to get a degree that, with my previous schooling (almost four years) could have been obtained in two years. I simply would not be able to meet those demands.

    However, I’ve found a compromise, which I think is a better way to word the “you can do it no matter what” part of this article. I plan to get a masters in nutrition. I’m confident that I can do that, with accommodations for the learning challenges.

    So in my opinion, there really are dreams that become impossible in the light of some disabilities. It doesn’t mean life has to stop, but there might have to be an adjustment of the dreams we have.

    On June 14, Angel posted the following:

    “They don’t compare their journey to everyone else’s. – Social comparison is the thief of happiness. Do YOUR best and don’t compare your progress with that of others. They aren’t YOU. We all need our own time to travel our own distance. Emotionally strong people know this is the truth, and they live by it.”

    This is a lesson I had to learn on my own. Someone with my physical and learning challenges might be more capable of going to medical school. I can’t compare myself to that person though, because I am who I am.

    I’m hoping I did not offend with my objection to this particular part of the article.

  • I am 64 and can speak from experience - life flies fast. It is so easy to let opportunities slip by while we make excuses. My cousin once said “an excuse is a skin of a reason stuffed with a lie”. The one we cheat most often is ourselves. There is no time like NOW!

  • Thank you so much. Your posts really empower personal growth.

  • Great post! I wonder if I could translate your thoughts here into my language but still including the source which is your address. What do you think?

  • It’s so beautiful how all people can come together on your website. Marc & Angel. Such a beyond beautiful thing to see. I love seeing people not being afraid to express themselves here too. ^_^ just letting it all go without judgement. I love U ANGEL and MARC - amazing people. Truly a blessing to this world. Thank you for always being there. Your website… it’s just a blessing beyond words could ever comprehend. God bless everyone who has posted upon here. They’re amazing too. Just the right words. Also bless you Angel and Marc and your little sweet precious newborn child. Bless your family always. Thanks for touching my soul with your words. Really gets me through the toughest times. Even tho life isn’t perfect. It surely makes the biggest difference when there’s people who care xoxo

  • Once again, thank you so much everyone! Angel and I feel honored to sit down a couple evenings every week and read your comments.

    In this particular post, your added tips and perspectives are exceptional and insightful (we actually enjoy when some of you constructively disagree with us).

    As she often does, Angel jotted down a few of your ideas future reference. When it makes sense, we love to put your suggestions into action in our lives (and add them to our “ideas” file for future posts).

    Cheers to dropping the excuses and getting more of the right things done! ;-)

  • I relate to a lot of these, I’m 22 and have had a history of depression and social anxiety..only thing I was doing was kettling myself into believing I was ‘nothing’ and now I’m building myself back again.

    By doing small attainable goals..Now time to do it

    Thank you for this post it means a lot!

  • Hi, I’ve recently been judged very inaccurately and extensively by a large group of judgmental people who don’t know me at all, they don’t say it to my face, but they shun/ignore me when they see me, and they talk shit about me on twitter where they think i can’t see and i won’t know because i don’t follow them. This is causing me lots and lots of pain, i know i’m not a worthless thing in any way but I see these people daily, and when i see them I think of all the things they’ve done to stab me countless times in my back thinking that I don’t know and that I don’t feel anything, and I feel so hurt that I might be starting to get depression. I offended some of them in the past and I’ve changed to try to be nicer and better in their eyes, but they still will not let me off the hook. In fact the more I try to accommodate them the more it seems they despise me. I am having long-term difficulty breathing just from thinking of all the misery i am experiencing. please, help. any suggestions?

  • @Tom:

    I saw your posting and feel bad for you; that’s a terrible situation to be in. I’ve been there myself with people making up their minds that I was somehow not a valuable human being and then enjoying making me the scapegoat. The shunning was particularly painful. I spent too many years of my life trying to get these people’s approval–trying to do everything right, agonizing over every word out of my mouth. It didn’t help; it just kept me tied to some toxic people. What I’ve learned in recent years is that I had to value myself no matter what they said, I had to imagine myself as an innocent child not deserving that–I’m a child of the universe as we all are–and then I had to actively think about how to protect that child. It meant getting AWAY from them, and though they are still people I have to interact with a few times a year, I just keep it civil, don’t talk about anything personal, and don’t let them count in my life. There are much better people in the world, and you’ll find them. Look for them. I wish you all the best. You deserve so much better–I know.

  • Wow! This is a simply fantastic article. I couldn’t agree more with it, though I do struggle with some of these excuses. Keep up the good work!

  • I was formerly a basketball coach and am currently a mid level school administrator. I once dreamed of being a coach at the collegiate level but deluded myself I was taking a “more responsible and secure” career path, in reality I always hated it. I’m guilty of just about every negative practice this site mentions and am trying desperately to stop.

    At 51 years old and a 30 year veteran, stuck in a mid level position that is generally held by younger people. Administrators my age have moved on to higher level jobs. I’ve tried unsuccessfully over and over to get a higher level admin job and I don’t know what practical steps to take to go back to what I should have kept doing… those jobs are occupied by younger people.

    I’ve never accomplished anything professionally that I feel good about. I’m just looking for some hope. I understand its never too late, but doesn’t time eventually run out and we just have to endure what we’ve signed ourselves up for?

  • It is so easy to sabotage oneself. It takes constant effort to monitor ones emotions. It can be easy to make many decisions every day that are motivated by emotions. I find I sometimes have slight emotional lows, that cause me to draw back. I attribute my withdrawal to fear, but it is really mild depression.

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