“It’s better to spend time creating ideas that might lead to success instead of seeking excuses for actions that led to failure!” – Futurist Jim Carroll
We can often spend too much time looking back and not enough looking forward – and in doing so, force ourselves into the wrong mindset!
By looking back at where we’ve been rather than where we are going, we fall prey to the tendency to focus more on what went wrong, and not enough time on examining what went right. Perhaps that’s human nature, and is probably something inherent to the way we humans think – our fear of failure can overcome our focus on potential success.
But that very process of examining the ‘bad’ stuff rather than the ‘good’ leads us into the trap of turning on our ‘excuses engine.’ It’s a mindset that gives us permission to do what we can to avoid personal responsibility – by blaming everyone other than ourselves.
The result is that we get into such a negative focus that it never allows us to make the mental leap into focusing on opportunities! Think about it – what excuses do you hear around you on a day-to-day basis? What culture of failure justification undercuts your ability to move forward? Where are you stifling opportunity through the pervasive attitude that everything would be OK if it just weren’t for other things?
- it wasn’t my fault!
- it wasn’t supposed to happen that way!
- I’m sorry for what I did
- I’m sorry it didn’t work out
- I’m sorry for what happened
- (lots of ‘sorries’ go on the list here)
- I never had enough time
- no one gave me a proper budget!
- I expected so much more
- I never had enough support
- I couldn’t get enough people to help me out
- I was lacking in cooperation!
- it wasn’t the right time!
After a period of time, excuses lead to a legacy of failure, a litany of losing – people tune out, identifying you as a whiner, an engine of mediocre thinking, someone who will never succeed at anything. That’s a pretty desperate corer to back yourself into.
Stop making excuses – engineer optimism! By turning it around and focusing on what’s next – and the opportunities for success – you change the storyline dramatically:
- here’s where we’re going to go
- I think it’s going to be great!
- I’ve got a wonderful idea!
- think about what we could accomplish!
- this is going to be fantastic!
- think of the implications!
- but wait, there’s even more!
Attitudes like this reek of positivity! Not only that, they change your thinking and that of those around you: you’re defined as an opportunity influencer, not an engine of negativity.
That’s pretty important considering what comes next.
Here are two videos to get you in the right frame of mind: excuses, innovation, and risk
And 10 Great Words!