Decide to be stronger than your excuses.
Focus on what you want. Focus on the end result.
And stop being a perfectionist. If you struggle with procrastination, then good is good enough.
Anyone can be stronger than their excuses… and it all comes down to their decision.
You are stronger than your problems
The first thing you want to realize is that you will always be stronger than your problems and circumstances.
And being stronger doesn’t necessarily mean being unaffected, or immune.
As long as you don’t allow your current problems, or situation, to stop you — then you are being stronger.
Just like you are being brave when you don’t let fear interfere with your goals and desires (even if you are afraid).
Say you have a goal, and your current circumstances or environment make it harder for you to achieve that goal.
Ideally, you would change your environment and stack the deck in your favor — be in a position where it’s much easier to reach your goal.
But assuming that’s not an option, you can then do two things:
- Focus on the problem, and complain (and do nothing)
- Focus on the goal, and take action
Which one do you choose? It’s as simple as that. It all comes down to your own decision.
Having the willpower to decide may be difficult, yes. But the actual decision doesn’t really require time, money, or effort.
You are stronger than your thoughts
Typically, you make excuses with your own thoughts.
The way you talk and the words you use may reflect that. But it all originates from your own thoughts.
And that’s a big problem, because most of the time we don’t really pay attention to our thoughts. We are not aware of them.
Worse yet, we tend to identify with them. Our mind generates an endless stream of thoughts, and we end up believing we are those thoughts.
So what’s the solution to this? How can we be stronger than our thoughts?
My advice would be to learn to detach yourself from the mind. Meditation and cognitive defusion are two great ways to do this.
It’s tricky at first. Your mind doesn’t want to be ignored. Your mind doesn’t want to be seen as a separate entity.
But the more you do it, the more obvious it becomes.
You then reach a point where you truly have the power to be stronger than your thoughts because you realize that…
- Your mind isn’t you
- You should use your mind (not the other way around)
- Only some of your thoughts are accurate, useful, and empowering
You are stronger than your anxiety
And if you’re reading this because anxiety interferes with your life, then know that you can be stronger than that as well.
Whether it’s anxiety, social anxiety, depression, panic attacks.
I’ve been there. I have had literally all these issues, all of them. That’s one of the reasons I started this blog.
You may have anxiety, but you can be stranger than your anxiety (or other mental health issues).
Think your anxiety is overwhelming? Get help immediately (reading this won’t help).
Think your anxiety is somewhat manageable, or normal? I still encourage you to try therapy, because it can help immensely.
But for now, just do it. Do the thing anyway, even if you’re anxious.
And don’t fight your anxiety. Embrace it, feel it. A normal amount of anxiety is… normal. It’s totally healthy, in fact.
So the worst thing you can do is to make your anxiety bigger, more important than it actually is.
If you don’t make it bigger, you can be stronger than it.
We can all make excuses
Here’s another interesting way to look at it — if everyone around you chose not to make excuses, to be more disciplined no matter what, would you do the same?
We all make excuses because it’s easier. But you want to ask: is it actually easier? Or is it easier because that’s what the average person does?
The truth is, as you become the kind of person who chooses to be stronger than their excuses, you’ll no longer be average.
We all make excuses in our head. But then there is a small percentage of people who ignore those excuses, who choose to be exceptional, to follow their dreams no matter what.
You can be part of that small percentage. Just know that at first it will be hard.
But not necessarily because you’ll have to use more time or energy. It will be harder because you’ll be the only one doing so.
How to be stronger than your excuses
Here are four simple tips to train your willpower muscles and say goodbye to your excuses.
In no particular order:
1. Ditch perfectionism
If you’d like to start exercising or go to the gym, but can only do so, say, twice a week… then do it twice a week.
If you’d like to have a side hustle but can realistically work on that, say, two hours a day… then work on it two hours a day.
Two is better than zero. One is better than zero. Anything is better than nothing.
One of the main reasons people like to make excuses is, they see things as either all or nothing.
You don’t need to hire a private chef and have the healthiest possible diet to be healthier.
You don’t need to go to the gym every single day to build a better physique. And so on. You get the point.
This is the first tip to be stronger than your excuses: stop being a perfectionist.
Action leads to results. Perfectionism leads to nothing.
Remember — anything is better than zero.
2. Focus on the end result
What you focus on grows. Choose where you focus your energy very carefully.
The second tip to be stronger than your excuses (and circumstances) is to simply shift your focus.
I mentioned this earlier: assuming your current problems cannot be avoided, you can either choose to focus on the problems, or focus on your goals.
The latter is the most sensible option. The most sensible, but not the most obvious.
That’s another trap of the mind — we tend to believe that the more we dwell on an issue, the closer we’ll get to the solution or goal. Which is false 99 percent of the time.
Why? Because you give energy to whatever you focus on. Focus on what doesn’t work, what you don’t have, and you’ll make it grow.
Don’t make the mistake most people make. Focus on what you want. Focus on the end result. Ignore anything else.
3. Know it could be worse
Alright, here’s a quick reality check: I don’t know who or where you are right now, but I’m sure it could be worse.
Like, much, much worse. A million times worse. Stop for a second and think.
The reason this is so powerful is, it gives you perspective. Then your current problems or obstacles no longer seem insurmountable.
We’ve all heard of stories of people who had literally nothing then reached success (financially or in any other area of their life).
I know — some of these stories are exaggerated, or even completely made up. But some are true.
So you want to ask: how many problems did these people have to face?
Their potential list of excuses could have been endless, but they chose to be stronger. They focused on what they wanted… and eventually got it.
4. Prioritize like a pro
Lastly, you want to be aware that your resources are very limited. Your time, your energy, your willpower — these things are finite.
So learn to prioritize.
Prioritize your time and don’t fill your whole day with tasks that aren’t that important.
Prioritize your energy and do whatever needs to be done when your energy levels are higher (e.g. in the morning).
Prioritize your attention and eliminate stupid distractions (e.g. try a TV or social media detox).
The idea is to make it easy for yourself. When you no longer multitask, when you have more resources available, then it’s easier to be stronger than your excuses.
Say no to anything that is not worth it. Say yes to what is.
“Be stronger than your excuses” quotes
Nothing splendid has ever been achieved except by those who dared believe that something inside them was superior to circumstance.Bruce Barton
Argue for your limitations and, sure enough, they are yours.Richard Bach
Success occurs when your dreams get bigger than your excuses.Unknown
We have more ability than willpower.François de la Rochefoucauld
Life has no limitations except the ones you make.Les Brown
Psst — you can read the full list of 33 quotes here!