Exchange Excuses for Reasons

Photo by Kelly Sikkema on Unsplash

Last night I wanted chocolate. It was after 7 pm. I am not a woman who eats after 7 pm I reminded myself. My brain ignored this gentle reminder. It proceeded to recite why I should eat the chocolate. My mind provided a multitude of justifications.

If you don’t eat it, someone else will. It would be an enjoyable snack as you watch the game. Your team is losing, and it will make you feel better. It is only a tiny piece of chocolate. It isn’t a big deal. You deserve it. A little chocolate is actually good for you, right?

I almost went to the kitchen and grabbed a couple (not just one of course) of the tiny, bite-sized chocolates, but then I stopped. I remembered a recent post I read by Elizabeth Benton, founder of Primal Potential. She shared that our excuses to take one action can also be our reason to choose differently. We can change our thoughts in an instant. It is like turning the channel on the television, but we do not always recognize it. Often we think we are powerless over our thoughts, not the person in control of them. When our mind throws up excuses about why we should or shouldn’t do something, we do not have to listen. We can change the narrative. It isn’t always easy and we will not always do it, but we can.

The beautiful thing is often our excuses are our reasons. 

  • Excuse: I am too tired to eat healthily. I will get fast food.

Reason: I am tired so I will eat something that will fuel my body well.

  • Excuse: No one can take care of my child as I do. I must do it solely.

Reason: No one can take care of my child as I do. I  will teach others how to care for Emily so she can depend on others if I am unable to meet her needs.

  • Excuse: I am tired. I will just sit on the sofa and watch Bravo.

Reason: I am tired. I will turn off the glowing screens and go to bed.

  • Excuse: I don’t have time to take a break. I will keep pushing forward.

Reason: I don’t have time to take a break. I must, or my body will force it.

  • Excuse: No one will know I did not honor my commitment. Eat after 7 pm.

Reason: No one will know I did not honor my commitment. I will know I did not honor my commitment to me and I matter more than anyone else.

Every excuse we have to take one action is also a reason to choose another.  We can choose to change course or go down the same path. We can learn and grow, or we can stay stuck. We can create new habits and neural pathways or continue to stick to the old.

I took just enough pause to reframe the situation. My excuses to do it are also my reasons not to do it. If I don’t eat it, then I honor my commitment to myself not to eat after 7 pm. If someone else eats it before I do, then good for them. My team is already losing, and eating chocolate will not fix it. (Who is this person that cares about a football game anyway?) It is a big deal because you are letting yourself down and not honoring your plan. Commitments to myself are the most important ones. I don’t deserve chocolate. I deserve to choose me. Besides, if I want chocolate when the sun rises, I can have it then. It is not a problem. 

Everyday I can choose to become a better thinker. I can continue to learn and grow. I can challenge my excuses and exchange them for reasons.

“When we change the way we look at things, the things we look at change.”- Wayne Dyer

Published by bshort1968

I am a self-described caregiver. I love to help and care for others. I have learned the value of caring for myself as well. Now I want to live my life helping others learn to care for others and take care of themselves as well.

3 thoughts on “Exchange Excuses for Reasons

  1. This all by itself is profound!

    “Reason: No one will know I did not honor my commitment. I will know I did not honor my commitment to me and I matter more than anyone else.”

    “I will know… and I matter more than anyone else!”

    Confidence is built one kept promise to ourselves at a time!

    Lack of confidence grows one unfulfilled promise to ourselves at a time…

    “We must all suffer from one of two pains: the pain of discipline or the pain of regret. The difference is discipline weighs ounces while regret weighs tons.”
    ~Jim Rohn

    Another Brilliant Article!

    Thanks Billie!

    Liked by 1 person

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