Reasons or Results
I often hear women say, “I don’t like tracking because it takes too much time.” Or, “Planning my meals takes too much work.” My response is always the same, “If you believe it’s worth it, you’ll find a way. If it’s not, you’ll find an excuse.” As harsh as it may sound, that’s the bottom line. Do we want reasons or results? If you always have a reason for why you can’t do what is necessary, then you will never get the results you seek.
If you look at anyone who has been successful at anything, you’ll see their familiar story. They put in the time, they did the work, they made sacrifices and they pushed past their comfort zone. Sure there might be a bit of genetics involved, but they had to nurture those gifts in order to get their results. So why do we think it should be any different when it comes to healthy eating?
Excuse-making is a defensive, or protective mechanism to justify our behaviors. So it’s not enough to tell ourselves to just STOP making excuses; we need to identify what the fears and limiting beliefs are that keep us stuck in this pattern. As Dr. Phil always says, “It’s impossible to change what you don’t acknowledge.”
Hold Onto Possibility
When Jesus asked the man at the pool if he wanted to be well, the man responded with an excuse. Why would his first response be an excuse? We can only surmise that he had grown so tired and so weary that, where he once might have seen possibility, he now only saw pain; where he once saw healing, he only saw heartbreak. So his only logical response now was to give reasons for why what he wanted was no longer possible.
Like him, excuses can become our automatic responses—our new normal—instead of holding on to our hope, promise, or expectation. EXCUSES justify why what we want is not possible. EXPECTATIONS declare what is possible when they are aligned with God’s plans for us.
Excuses keep us from taking responsibility for our lives and our health. They rob us of our personal power and leave us feeling helpless in our circumstances.
Today, take the time and identify why you sometimes make excuses. Don’t focus on exceptional circumstances like a death in the family, or a serious injury. Look at the chronic excuses that you continually make and have probably been making for years. Give those to God in prayer and let Him show you what fear is at the root.
For today, look at your action step and identify all of the excuses you make for why you don’t carry it out. For example, if your action step is to walk, you might say, “It’s raining outside.” “It’s too cold, or hot,” “I don’t have enough time.” Ask yourself, do you want reasons or results? Pray about what the truth is behind the fear or limiting belief, and then make a plan for what you will do in the event of the excuse. For example, If it’s raining outside, I will put on a workout video and exercise at home.
- Think of the last time you failed to practice your action step. What was the reason? What could you have done instead?
- Identify up to three excuses you make that prevent you from reaching your healthy weight.
- Share the biggest excuse you often make with your accountability partner and let them know what you will do the next time you hear yourself making that excuse.
To learn more about how to make good choices for your health and to develop healthy eating habits, pick up a copy of my new book, “Healthy Eating, God’s Way” now available on Amazon.