Uncomfortable Truths

“It is wise to direct your anger towards problems – not people; to focus your energies on answers – not excuses.”

William Arthur Ward

A great excuse is still an excuse. That’s a tough pill to swallow but it’s true. Especially if the excuse is holding you back.

Age is an excuse you hear a lot. I’m too old… or you’re too young

Tell that to all the oldies over 50 workings hard, kicking butt, and owning their life.

Tell that to all the twenty-somethings on the 30 under 30 lists.

But I’m not them, I don’t have what they’ve got.

It’s true, you aren’t them (you are you) and you may not be as well off or as connected or smart as they are. No problem. (“Good”, as Jocko Willink, says.) That means you got some work to do.

STAY BOLD, Keep Pursuing,
— Josh Waggoner | Daily Blog #988

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Money as an Excuse

“Opportunity is missed by most people because it is dressed in overalls and looks like work.”

Thomas A. Edison

I often find myself using a lack of money or lack of the “proper” equipment as an excuse to be unable to do something.

‘Oh—I’d love to take up leather-working, but I would have to buy all the tools, and leather supplies and have a workspace…’

‘Oh—I’d love to create more music, but first I need a b c d e f g…x y z equipment…’

‘Gee—I’d love to take Seth Godin’s altMBA, but I just can’t afford the tuition right now.’

On and on—mooo. I’m like a cow in a field wishing for a cloudy day. It’s easy to distract yourself so much on what you can’t do right now that you are obvious to all the opportunities in front of you.

Lack of money or other resources can be limiting—for example, it’s difficult to start an online business if you can’t even afford to pay for a Squarespace or Shopify website—but limitations are an opportunity to think outside of the box and find a way around barriers.

Lack of money is an opportunity to think differently and more creatively.

This is a very stoic mindset. If X doesn’t work—what else can you try? What’s a way around this barrier? How can I turn this into an advantage?

STAY BOLD, Keep Pursuing,
— Josh Waggoner | Daily Blog #977

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No Excuses

Not managing your time and making excuses are two bad habits. Don’t put them both together by claiming you ‘don’t have the time’.

Bo Bennett

Accepting no excuses might be one of the hardest hurdles we can face when seeking a meaningful life.

Often, it feels like there is an enormous (lava-filled) gap between who we are and who we want to be. (or what we want to be doing). There are so many reasons we will encounter on our journey in the pursuit of creativity and meaning assuring us, without a doubt, that what we want is impossible. Good reasons too.

“I can’t start a business because I don’t have any money”
“I can’t (apply for the job) / (freelance) / (start my idea) because I don’t know enough yet”
Or the classically ambiguous “I’m not ready yet”.

What does being ready even mean?
We’re never really ready to start something. Even if we had all the time, money and skill-sets in the world, we still would likely feel unready and unable to start.

Looking back on my life, I notice a lot of these reasons cropping up, stopping me from doing things I wanted to do. I gave reasons why not in the moment, but didn’t stop to think how flimsy the reasons were. I also didn’t consider the reason why I should.

More often not, the reasons why you should will outweigh the reasons why you shouldn’t do something.

Why should you?

+Because there’s only so much time we have to live on this earth, and the tiny bit of time we do have is anything but assured.

+Because if not now, when?

+Because if you don’t, nothing will get better, nothing will change.

+Because the best time to start is where you are, with what you have.

+Because the very thing you think you need — more time, more money, more skill, more confidence, etc — will be created and honed by doing something.

+And because at the end of the day, what we do defines who we are (which enables what we do).

Would more money help? Absolutely.
Would more skill be better? 100%.

However, dwelling on what you don’t have and can’t control, takes your focus away from what you do have and what you can control. We can’t control our past, nor what got us where we are. But we can control what we do today, and each day going forward.

This is your time, this is your memoir you are building right now.

Any excuse is just that — an excuse. Something allowing to not act.

No excuse is worthy of stopping you.

STAY BOLD, Keep Pursuing,
— Josh Waggoner

Daily Blog #583

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