Happy people don't #9 Make excuses

The answer to this question determines whether you will succeed

I’m gonna bust out two quotes that are going to blow your mind today. One from a multi-millionaire businessman, and one from one of my whip-smart girlfriends who suffers no fools. Ready? Okay.

“If you are interested you’ll do what’s convenient.
If you are committed, you’ll do whatever it takes”.
~ John Assaraff.

Read it again. Really take it in. This is one of the most powerful concepts I know in terms of creating and owning your own health and happiness. Happy people are committed to being happy and successful, and less happy people are generally only interested in being happy. The difference is massive.

What it means is this: When we are truly committed to an outcome – whatever it may be – getting in shape, buying an investment property, qualifying as a vet, owning our own business, whatever it may be – we will do whatever it takes to make it happen. There will be obstacles – with any milestone that’s big or consequential – a few (or a lot!) of obstacles along the way are an inevitable part of that journey.

A happy and successful person knows that, and moves over or around that obstacle in whatever way they can to keep their eyes focused on the outcome they want. They will try and try and try in however many ways they need to, to make it happen. They are not just interested in their success they are incontrovertibly committed to it. They don’t get thrown off at the first sign of struggle.

For example, someone who has decided they will be happier 15kgs lighter and commits to that goal will find a way to leave the office on time for a workout, when the person who is just interested in being 15kgs lighter will not. They will get up at whatever time they have to, to prep healthy meals, or to make the bootcamp. They will say no to the wine or the dessert at the social family dinner because they are not just interested in being at their best weight, they are committed to making that happen. They are more committed to their goal than they are interested in another 45 minutes in bed or the social acceptance of joining in with a slice of cake.

When we are interested rather than committed we fool ourselves into thinking we are going to make that thing we want happen. But really, we are only going to achieve it if we don’t have to extend ourselves too much or make too many difficult, uncomfortable calls. We are not going to do what it takes, we are going to do what’s convenient. If everyone else is eating healthy round the dinner table, we will too. If everyone else orders the pizza, well then we will join in. We do what is convenient. It’s very different and it’s characterised by a feeling of slight aimlessness, like we aren’t really achieving or that we are drifting a bit. It doesn’t feel terrible, but it doesn’t feel like happiness on purpose either. It feels like the path of least resistance.

When we are interested rather than committed, the main thing you will hear coming out of our mouths is excuses. “Oh I was going to save that money, but something unexpected came up”; “I am getting back on that eating plan as soon as, but it has just been really busy at the moment” – that sort of thing. Excuses. Excuses.

This is where my second quote comes in, where my smart and beautiful friend who kicks ass in business and at home fondly says:

“Everything before the but is BS”.

Snappy, right? It sums it all up for me – everything before the “but” is what we are interested in, rather than committed to. If we were committed, there would be no “but”. It would be an “and“ instead.

For example: “I wanted to save that money, something unexpected came up, and so I had to work three extra shifts/sell some stuff to make it happen”;

“I am back on that eating plan, it’s been really busy at the moment, and so I have had to say no to quite a few things to make it happen, but I’ve done it”.

Happy people don’t make excuses. They get committed. They know there will be curveballs – and they meet them with an “and” not a “but”. At the end of the day they think: do I want to make it happen? Or do I want to make excuses? Am I interested or am I committed? Will I do what it takes, or will I just do what’s convenient? It’s a recipe for success – let me know how you get on.


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