You can either make excuses or make progress. Here are a few ways to replace your common excuses for not growing, with action steps!

  • “I’ll launch/start that next season/month/year.” This classic procrastination excuse simply kicks the goal down the road instead of exploring any benefits to starting now. Just get a piece of planning started today: for instance, what you need to make it happen, or a list of first steps
  • “I don’t have enough energy to do it.”Sometimes this is a true reason, and not simply an excuse–and it needs medical/counseling solutions to get you fit enough to rock your goals. Other times, it’s an excuse that stems from dedicating too much energy to something you don’t want to do quite as much as this new growth goal–which requires you to put up better boundaries to protect your energy.
  • “There’s so much going on.” All of us are busy–it seems to be the basic requirement for our existence these days (sadly). This excuse needs a prescription of priority-setting to rank what is truly most worthy of your limited time. Keeping those growth goals at the top of that list is not selfish!
  • “I can’t do it by myself.” True that! Most of our biggest goals (or new pursuits) need the advice or expertise or accountability from at least one other person–if not a whole team of supporters! Staying stuck for feeling alone is the excuse; engaging people who can kick-start your goal is the remedy.
  • “I don’t see the path forward.” We humans like to sail on the sure-thing ship, where we have control of all the variables of our future success. Not reality, though. Often, the best and most exciting results come on paths where you only take the very next step and see what happens. Only then do you make the next best decision.
  • “Yeah, yeah, yeah, I know that already and it didn’t work.” This excuse reflects a non-continuous-learner posture that slams the door on coaching that seeks to develop options for growing forward. Even if the statement is true, mine for the nuggets that made the last action not work, or what piece of it had the potential to be successful given the right environment to thrive. Never stop brainstorming options by being a know-it-all or a victim.
  • “Too many forces out of my control.” I hear ya, and it stinks to feel like a cornered cat due to the impact of others/circumstances on our lives. But you always have another move, another choice–be it a “micro-choice.” Take a baby step in the direction you want to go and celebrate it when it doesn’t upset the whole apple cart. Then take another. You’ll be in a better place than you were last year–if at least with your self-improvement/confidence to courageously move through obstacles.

No more excuses. Declare what are going to do, block out the time to do it, and obey your calendar–and you’ll consistently Grow Forward.  Contact Paul D. Casey at www.paulcasey.org or on LinkedIn to get more leadership and self-leadership tips.