on life, ambitions, and dreams

Make No Excuses

The Recession is no excuse to drink bad wine

I read the brilliant Danielle LaPorte’s post on The Perils of Justifying Yourself this morning and it aligns with how I feel about excuses – they’re a waste of your time and your breath, so don’t make them. And why the hell do you have to justify the rationale of your actions to anyone except for yourself? What you do in your life is right for you and you alone.

As all writers know, actions speak a hell of a lot louder than words. If there is something I want to do, I will do it. I will not tell you how or why I’m going to do it. I just will.

The perils of justifying yourself to others

Once you make a decision and announce it, the first question people ask is “Why?” These people usually care about you and are curious about your life, which is generally why they ask for details that you don’t volunteer. The challenge is to not to make excuses for your actions to others. Not to get wooed into justifying yourself after you consciously decide not to justify your feelings to yourself.

Everything that Ms. LaPorte lists about the corrosive effects of over-justifying your feelings can be applied when asked to justify your actions to others. Just don’t do it. Yes, there are times when it makes sense, but most times just stand by what you feel and what you do. Be authentic.

I get it, I really do. People want to connect with people on a personal level. It’s why we all dig blogs, Facebook, Twitter, and developing relationships online. It’s why I blog, too, right? I want to connect with all of you and share my world with you. I want you to care, and I want to care about you. But there are times when asking “Why” or “What happened” is not appropriate because people are looking for you to justify your actions. Sometimes it is, what it is

Photo Credit: henry…

Share

13 Responses

  1. Laura, you wise thing, you!nnYou are spot on. Thanks for opening + sharing this (and I enjoyed Danielle’s post, too). (Actually, “enjoyed” is not correct–I was socked in the gut be her post–and yours. In a totally good socked-in-the-gut kind of way, of course.) nnTwo realizations: 1) I *know* I justify myself way too often. I don’t want to step on toes, I want to please everyone. Icky. Doesn’t feel good. 2) I do a disservice to others if I always ask THEM “why?” I ask tons of questions, all the time–because I want to understand people. But this gives me a kick in the pants to be a little more cautious about the questions I ask others. nnThank you. 🙂

    1. I fall into the trap of #1 way too often. What’s worse is I do it because I am afraid they’ll judge my actions/thoughts/feelings/etc. and I want to make sure they know exactly where I’m coming from.nnWhen really, they may not care that much in depth at all. nnI hope it was a good kick, Ms. Cali. Curious, did you find that blog-post inspiration today?

  2. Laura, you wise thing, you!nnYou are spot on. Thanks for opening + sharing this (and I enjoyed Danielle’s post, too). (Actually, “enjoyed” is not correct–I was socked in the gut be her post–and yours. In a totally good socked-in-the-gut kind of way, of course.) nnTwo realizations: 1) I *know* I justify myself way too often. I don’t want to step on toes, I want to please everyone. Icky. Doesn’t feel good. 2) I do a disservice to others if I always ask THEM “why?” I ask tons of questions, all the time–because I want to understand people. But this gives me a kick in the pants to be a little more cautious about the questions I ask others. nnThank you. 🙂

  3. Great stuff. Matt Chevy and I were talking the other day on how you can’t just turn someone down. You get invited to something and you say, “Well, I’ll see if I can make it.” You really want to say, “No. I don’t want to come.” but you can’t. Sheesh.nnAnyway, great writing.

    1. Actually, Sam, consider that saying “No” is an honest and cool thing to do. It leaves the other person knowing *exactly* where they stand and creates a place for them to see into your world. By saying “I’ll see if I can make it” leaves others left with a wishy-washy feeling. By saying “No, thank you” allows them to see you as someone who knows what’s possible for himself. And if they ask why, be honest. As long as your reasons are kept very factual & straight, you won’t look like a mean guy. You will look like someone who knows what he wants in life and is making every moment count. Straight talk is becoming rare, and let me tell ya, when I encounter it, it’s refreshing and freeing. nnWhen one is honest with themselves, it is easy to be honest with everyone. Not brutally honest: you should still inherently care about the person, just be honest. Everyone likes knowing exactly where they stand in this world, because it is from there that we can make choices for our lives.

  4. Great stuff. Matt Chevy and I were talking the other day on how you can’t just turn someone down. You get invited to something and you say, “Well, I’ll see if I can make it.” You really want to say, “No. I don’t want to come.” but you can’t. Sheesh.nnAnyway, great writing.

    1. Actually, Sam, consider that saying “No” is an honest and cool thing to do. It leaves the other person knowing *exactly* where they stand and creates a place for them to see into your world. By saying “I’ll see if I can make it” leaves others left with a wishy-washy feeling. By saying “No, thank you” allows them to see you as someone who knows what’s possible for himself. And if they ask why, be honest. As long as your reasons are kept very factual & straight, you won’t look like a mean guy. You will look like someone who knows what he wants in life and is making every moment count. Straight talk is becoming rare, and let me tell ya, when I encounter it, it’s refreshing and freeing. nnWhen one is honest with themselves, it is easy to be honest with everyone. Not brutally honest: you should still inherently care about the person, just be honest. Everyone likes knowing exactly where they stand in this world, because it is from there that we can make choices for our lives.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.