Bullshit Excuses: I Have Heard Them All

By: Peggy Willms

(3 minute read)

Excuses, I have heard them all. Let’s start with the definition for the word excuse from the Webster’s Dictionary: to make apology for; try to remove blame from; forgive entirely; grant exemption; justify.

To kick it off – I have two fire engine red buttons on my desk. The first one is my Bullshit button. She comes into action when my Bullshit meter is fed up with listening to excuses.

My Bullshit button has several pre-recorded shout outs, and when I smash it, any of these random screeches may belt out: “That is Bullshit…Bullshit detected, take cover…Bullshit Level Defcon 5… Now common on that isn’t even Bullshit, that is horse shit…Bullshit alert.”

You get the Bullshit button if I hear repeated excuses. I will listen to a similar excuse up to three times. If you do not find a solution, bam – I hit the button! I can only roll my eyes back into my head so many times.

My second red button allows me to record my own comments or commands. Let’s just say I reserve that one for my somewhat unprofessional responses. 

Now you see the roles of my red buttons. What are some of the frequent excuses I hear? The majority fall under what I call “The T-O-O’s.”

  • “I didn’t work out because…it was too hot…it was too cold…I was too tired…I was too sore…” or …
  • “I didn’t eat well because…I was too hungry…planning meals is too hard…” or…
  • “I missed my goal because…I can’t take days off…I am too busy…I will start tomorrow…I will start Monday…At least I didn’t gain 10 pounds this week…”

Shall I go on? These are but a few. And, I am sure you have a dozen more you use or you have heard others dole out. I, for sure, want to hear those in the comment section.

You ask, how do I respond to excuses? I would love to tell you. You have three times to whine about something or to respond with a “justification” attempt. If you do not create a solution or compromise for these redundant, unfulfilled commitments, after three times – you strike out. And it is time for the real response. You just did or didn’t want to do it.

There might be a “real” reason like you died or became intubated. But if you have said something similar, multiple times, doesn’t an excuse really boil down to you either did or didn’t want to do something?

Why can’t you say it like it is?

“I didn’t want to work out…I don’t want to prepare a menu for the week…I wanted to eat sugar every day…I don’t want to go to bed early…I love playing Candy Crush three hours a day…I hate the gym…”

We can deal with that. We can develop strategies to beat the crap out of those responses.

Come on, own it. Oh, I should type this in all caps. Scream through the keyboard, Coach. GET REAL! I know what is going on anyway. It isn’t my first or even 10,000th rodeo.

I have learned to come to terms with this myself. And it isn’t easy! I am not a robot just ticking along playing by all the rules. I am far from perfect and many times I am a hypocrite. Oh hell, I said it.

BUT I AM A BIG GIRL (there go those caps again). I know how to confess. I have killed off excuses! I say it like it is. “I didn’t do [fill in the blank] because I DIDN’T WANT TO or I did [fill in the blank] because I WANTED to.”

“I want to work every day that ends with ‘y’ and for 12 hours a day. I love it. I don’t want to waste time eating, sleeping, doing the downward dog, chatting about ‘nothingness.’ I could be getting shit done or out in the sun walking or kayaking. I don’t want to relax in a bubble bath; unless I can do emails.”

I have to work on being an Excuse Executioner. I am not the Queen of Excuse Proofing myself. It is a constant work in progress. Just like other habits, when you say excuses over and over, they become mindless and effortless. You start to settle. Your integrity drops and you break not only promises to others, but yourself. Your words hold less weight.

And, frankly, it is Bullshit. Where is my button?

Peggy Willms
                                                                     All Things Wellness, LLC
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