The dog ate my homework....

"For many people, an excuse is better than an achievement because an achievement, no matter how great, leaves you having to prove yourself again in the future but an excuse can last for life."
Eric Hoffer - author

Excuses are very easy. We use them everyday and in lots of ways. If we run late, there's an excuse. When we miss a deadline, there's an excuse. We can cheat on our diet with an excuse. We can hide an excuse by calling it a reason, but it's still an excuse. They're easy, that's the plain truth.

I like the quote above, it lays out the truth about excuses. What if we do that "something" the right way at the right time -- possibly meeting the commitments we set for ourselves. What does that do to our lives!! Well, there will be an expectation to get "something" else done. What a vicious cycle.

But what if we lived our lives this way - with no excuses, no reasons why we can't do something. How would each of us change (individually and as a "people")? I would change a lot, I could no longer put the blame on other people, acts of God, random events, etc. -- I would have to be responsible to myself (my wife, my children, my community, everyone and everything). All of a sudden, I would have to "put up or shut up".

I have come to realize that I have spent many hours (that accumulated are days or weeks) of my life making excuses. And as the saying goes "How's the working for you?" -- and the answer is, about as well as you could expect. We are all accountable for our actions (or inactions), we all go to sleep and wake up with the same person everyday, look that person in mirror when we wake up and have to face the cold hard fact that - it's my life, and my responsibility.

So what do you do about it? Each night, you forgive yourself for all the things you could have done better, but didn't. And you wake up in the morning telling yourself it's a new day, new opportunities, a fresh day. None of us is perfect, even the best human alive today is not perfect. We all have flaws, we all have things "to work on", we all can improve.

The key is if you fall down, get up. If you can't get up on your own, ask for help. And if no one can hear you, yell at the top of your lungs. I've read about successful marriages, and one of the keys is to never go to bed angry with each other - well I'll extend that to each of us individually - don't go to bed angry with yourself - forgive yourself, and make it your goal to do better tomorrow.

1 comment:

  1. That is a great quote, Arnie...where can I pin it?

    But, you also make some thoughtful points here. I wonder if excuses simply arise from fear, a lack of self-worth, and similar kinds of emotions. So, your suggestion to, in a way, speak honestly with ourselves, is a much better and more fulfilling course to take.

    All the same, that quote is compelling...


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