Self-Awareness 101 Episode 20: A List Of Excuses vs. Results
In this episode Willard talks about making a conscious decision about whether we want to be known for delivering excuses or results.
Today we're going to explore the idea... A List Of Excuses or Results. Your choice. Which one will you deliver?
Have you ever found yourself overwhelmed with commitments you've made to the point where you follow through on almost none of them?
Commitments to others, or maybe even commitments to yourself -example, commitments to assignments, getting things done at work, commitments to your family , commitments to quitting smoking or going on a diet and exercising.
There was a point in my life where I was so scared of disappointing other people that I would say yes to everything people asked me to do, knowing that there was only 24 hours in a day and there was no way I was going to accomplish it all.
But I did not want to disappoint people, so I would say yes. And then I would follow through to maybe only 20 % of what I committed to and then come up with a list of excuses as to why I couldn't keep my word. But I thought I was a good guy, because when people asked, I would say, "Absolutely, I can do that." I didn't even realize how often I was not keeping my word, until I had a fried call me on it. On a regular basis I committed to him that I would come to his house and help him out with things. Then I would call him to let him know that I was running late. And then I would call him again telling him I was going to be even later to the point where I would end up being hours late. One day he really had enough and said, "You know what, I'm not counting on you anymore because you don't keep your word." At first I took that as a slap in the face because when I was younger my grandmother would tell us that the only thing of value in life… is your word. And I used to believe that I was good at keeping my word. I showed up... I was late but I showed up... ok, sometimes I showed up.
If you think about it, your word is the main thing that people really judge you by. It’s not your intentions, its your actions, your follow through. That is how people form their opinions of what kind of person you are. So when my friend made me aware of how often I was not keeping my word, I really needed to re-evaluate things, because I valued his opinion, and for him to point this pout as strongly as he did, I knew I was not being true to who I represented myself to be. I wanted to be a person of integrity. I wanted to be authentic. I wanted people to know that they could count on me. And that was my fear, it was why I committed to so much, I didn't want to disappoint them and I found out that I was disappointing them almost 80% of the time.
So I became hyper-sensitive to what I would say yes to. I made the decision that I was no longer going to over commit myself. I would only commit to things that I knew without a doubt, that I could step up to with full certainty, and do. It got to the point where some people thought I was absolutely silly with it. They would ask, "Could you pick me up at the airport on Thursday?" and I would say, "Ask me on Thursday". They would look at me strangely and ask again, "No, I need to know if you can pick me up at the airport on Thursday." And I would stay with my response, "Please ask me on Thursday, I don't want to make a commitment now that I may not be able to keep." At first, people were a bit offended by that kind of response, but over time they learned that the only thing I would commit to was something I was certain I could deliver on. They began to know that if I told them I was going to do it, they had no doubt in their mind that I would follow through on my promise and do it.
Doing this changed my perceptions about myself and it changed other's perceptions about me. And something I want to mention here that is very, very important; is that by not keeping my word and constantly making a list of excuses, unconsciously I had set myself up to fail in everything that I attempted. 80% of what I had set as a goal, I would not follow through on. Because unconsciously, when I said “Yes”, even to myself, or when I told myself I was going to do something, my unconscious had been conditioned to believe that I would not follow through. Since my unconscious didn't believe I was going to follow through, it never pulled together the resources I needed to succeed. It knew that my commitment meant nothing.
So what I want to ask you to do is for the next week, for the next seven days, become hypersensitive to what you do commit to. Only commit to things that you absolutely know you can follow through on. Stay away from saying yes just to get someone off your back. Stay away from saying yes just to avoid to getting into a deeper discussion of why you can't do it. Only commit to what you can follow through on.
Again, a list of excuses or results. It is your choice. Which will you deliver?
Choose the Episode you would like to watch from the list below:
Self-Awareness 101 Series with Transcription Plus
Introduction To Self-Awareness 101: To Inspire, Educate and Empower
SA 101 Episode 1: The Importance of Developing Self-Awareness
SA 101 Episode 2: How to Truly Learn from Mistakes
SA 101 Episode 3: To Soar, I Needed To Let Go Of The Past
SA 101 Episode 4: The Meaning That We Give Things
SA 101 Episode 5: Kind Words And Good Deeds Are Eternal
SA 101 Episode 6: Life Begins At The End Of Your Comfort Zone
SA 101 Episode 7: Two Most Powerful Words You'll Ever Say
SA 101 Episode 8: Making Time For What's Truly Important
SA 101 Episode 9: Expectations and Desires About How It Ought To Be
SA 101 Episode 10: Tap Into The Sources Of The Universe
SA 101 Episode 11: The Four Agreements
SA 101 Episode 12: Courage-Being Scared But Saddling Up Anyways
SA 101 Episode 13: The Power Of Belief Systems
SA 101 Episode 14: Change Is Inevitable, Growth Is Optional
SA 101 Episode 15: Establishing Personal Boundaries; It's OK To Say No
SA 101 Episode 16: Encountering External Resistance To Change
SA 101 Episode 17: Creating A Supportive Environment
SA 101 Episode 18: Our Decisions Determine Who We Become
SA 101 Episode 19: Personal Development Tests
SA 101 Episode 20: A List Of Excuses Vs. Results
SA 101 Episode 21: The Meaning Of Honesty
SA 101 Episode 22: Living In Gratitude
SA 101 Episode 23: Repetitive Patterns
SA 101 Episode 24: Non-Verbal Cues
SA 101 Episode 25: Be Brave Enough To Accept The Help Of Others
SA 101 Episode 26: Positive Thoughts And Positive Intentions
SA 101 Episode 27: Active Listening Skills
SA 101 Episode 28: How Self-Awareness Relates To Spirituality
SA 101 Episode 29: Positive Affirmations
SA 101 Episode 30: Basic Meditation Exercises
SA 101 Episode 31: Personal Development At Work
SA 101 Episode 32: Toxic Shame
SA 101 Episode 33: Eliminating Clutter
SA 101 Episode 34: How To Forgive Others
SA 101 Episode 35: Self-Forgiveness
SA 101 Episode 36: Deepening Self-Awareness
SA 101 Episode 37: What Is Fear?
SA 101 Episode 38: How To Overcome Fear
SA 101 Episode 39: Dealing With Your Anger
SA 101 Episode 40: How To Find Your Passion
SA 101 Episode 41: Increasing Your Self-Awareness
SA 101 Episode 42: How To Feel Deserving
SA 101 Episode 43: How To Be A Humble Observer
SA 101 Episode 44: Progress Not Perfection
SA 101 Episode 45: Expectations And Perfectionism
SA 101 Episode 46: Dealing With Anger
SA 101 Episode 47: Taking Responsibility For Yourself
SA 101 Episode 48: Achieving Higher Consciousness
SA 101 Episode 49: Trust Life
SA 101 Episode 50: Being Skeptical
SA 101 Episode 51: Benefits Of Closure
SA 101 Episode 52: The Final Episode