Your excuses have been with you since you were born, and boy, do they love to avoid hard work and uncomfortable situations.
If you dare to do something that requires effort, prepare yourself for the onslaught of reasons why it can’t or shouldn’t be done. Excuses are there to give you a way out, rationalize your decision, and distract you. That is their game.
The only thing admirable about your excuses is that they are reliable.
Since excuses seem to love attention, let’s give them some.
Today we’re going to learn how to call-out our excuses when they show up.
In fact, we are going to greet them at the door, “Oh hi Excuse, I was expected you”.
Don’t let them walk into your house like they own the joint.
Your mind is your house.
Who is in charge?
Live from the top of Inspiration Mountain, I’m Catherine Pitura and this is the Conscious Climber: where we help you help your climbing.
Let us get right into it.
What it is: The Excuse shows up as (believable) reasons why you can’t do something. Excuses are your Egos way of preventing change, because change is transformation, and transformation is effortful for the Ego. And for whatever reason, the Ego desperately wants to remain the same.
Whether it is that multi-pitch you have been inspired to climb (excuses say: you are still too weak), or that group you would like to climb with (excuses say: you are not good enough to climb with them and they won’t like you), or that person who wants to climb with you (excuses say: they are ugly/stupid I don’t want to be seen with them).
What to do: When you feel the call, the inspiration from your heart or “gut” area to do something, hold on to that feeling. Honor that seed of inspiration and show it respect. This will help to nurture those intuitive impulses. Inspiration may sound like, “This thing would be good for your personal growth.”
Do that thing.
But expect excuses.
As you start to become aware, you will notice very real sounding reasons why you shouldn’t do things.
When excuses speak up, you need to, too.
This is where you need to call them out. Your excuses are not you; they don’t have your best interests in mind.
When these self-defeating thoughts barge in, counter them with self-love. Darkness cannot survive the light.
Excuses can be confusing because they are not always super easy to identify; sometimes they are legitimate and sometimes they are so sly you don’t even realize you are operating out of excuses. Excuses have grey areas, and it makes it more challenging to call-out a real excuse.
The way I see it, there are two grey areas around Excuses that are worth identifying so you can differentiate them from the Ego-based Excuse – the kind we do not want making decisions for us. Let’s take a look at these two deviations of the excuse to help you make the choices you want to make.
What it is: The Imposter is the Ego-based Excuse in disguise. You don’t even know it is the one making choices for you. It has snuck into your house unannounced because you have been too lenient with it in the past.
What to do: A good place to start is to get out of your head and into your heart. The Ego dialogue is going to take place in your mind, so get out of there. Unless you can differentiate between pure thoughts and ego-based thoughts, like excuses, the mind can be a confusing place.
Instead go inward and ask your heart what it feels like doing. This may take an open-mind and some practice, but if you “listen” you will get the honest answer you were looking for: should I do this, or should I not?
What it is: The Reason may look like an Excuse, but it is not. The Reason is like a legitimate excuse.
The difference between a Reason and an Excuse is that Reasons stem from the source of Instinct and Intuition – areas worth listening to.
What to do: You can identify a Reason by checking if it is valid. You can check if it is a valid reason by asking yourself some questions, like:
Is the rock wet? à Yes à Climb only if you want to
Is it safe? à I don’t think I can climb this safely today à Do not climb
Are your fingers sore? à Yes, I have been cranking lots this week à Let your body recover. Do not climb.
Does your partner have questionable belay skills? à I have not climbed with Joe before; he seems new à evaluate his skills before you start up a route, than decide.
Hope these help you negotiate the tricky terrain of YOU.