13 Excuses Other Than My Dog Ate My Homework

The service may have even been better.

The cashier had her cell phone out and was texting. She stopped and greeted me. Processed my order quickly. Was friendly when the order was finished. At first my old thinking had me thinking “get off your phone and pay attention”. So old school.

Then I rethought it.

Why not? I got the same if not better service than from people not on their phones. Not sure if the company just doesn’t want to fight it. Or if it is even necessary.

Speaking of phones I had an idea to pause or delay receiving text messages for a specified period of time. Maybe this exists. Let me know if it does. If not the feature could be used for times such as driving or sleeping, at night or while napping, while at work, or any time you don’t want to be interrupted.

Think about it.

Phones can be an obstacle sometimes in relationships and in life.

My wife and I both made obstacles courses as kids. She said she had fun making them. And I know I did too. As children it was fun to face challenges. As adults I sometimes want to hide from them. To avoid them. Or ignore them.


Some I meet head on. When I’ve had enough sleep.

As an adult most obstacles are just excuses I tell myself why I can’t do something.

Day 59 of Claudia’s book Become An Idea Machine.

10 excuses and how they can be overcome:

1 It’s not original

This first excuse almost stopped me from doing this list. Excuses are so common and so why repeat them? It isn’t going to be new material. Which leads me to number two. But first to overcome it not being original, I thought well what I have to say might be cliche but it might have a certain element of my voice in it that is unique and reaches someone in a relatable way.

2 I’ve heard/read this before

Following on the heels of not being original the excuse of being exposed to it before stops people from reading or listening. When teaching a topic that is well tread I ask the listeners to focus to see if they can expand their knowledge or pick up something new. Or at least try to pay attention in case they forgot something. At the end of the day maybe it is just a good refresher or reminder.

3 Not enough time

We’ve all got the same 24 hours… blah blah blah. The busy factor is next. But just the time part now. Seriously wake up earlier. I do it and I get more done. I go to bed earlier because of it and sleep better. I love the quite in the morning. I love coffee and then general feel of the morning time. And then I can always stay up late if I need to to have “more time”.

4 Too busy

I’m too busy is a common excuse. I am busy too. So I cut out things. Let the dishes stay another day undone or laundry in the dryer. Simple things that can be delayed a day or two get put off so I can do other things I think are important. Most things in life are beyond our control. But a few things are. So take control of what you can and not do what you don’t have to. And rethink things that you “have to” do. Maybe you’ve been stressing yourself out over nothing. Rethink everything.

5 I don’t like to ____

I excuse not doing things because I don’t like them. Something you do “have to” do and I don’t always like it. Recently I’ve heard the expression of “eat the frog” meaning to just do the thing first that you don’t want to do to get it out of the way. I have tried it a few times but not consistently. When I find I don’t want to do something I find it is because I had been thinking of it too much and building up to be bigger in my mind than it turns out to be. So to not do that I stop thinking and start doing.

6 It’s not my job

This is a lazy excuse. If this is your outlook then you are probably miserable in more than one way. Nothing is anyone’s job really. No one gets paid enough to do that. People either are mature. Or duty bound. Or think they “have to”. Whatever it is the job will get done. If it is not by you then you are not really a team player. Collaboration is growing greater than ever with the internet connecting everyone. So make things that aren’t your job your job so you can be more successful more able to take control of your own life.

7 If they paid me more I would

A touch of this was in the last excuse. There is never enough money for crappy jobs. And you can never get paid enough to do all the little things that are required if you are an entrepreneur. If money is always a concern, it will always be a concern. Get outside of cash, credit and does anyone still use checks? Money is not life. And if you make your life about money it is gonna suck. “Flee the pursuit of wealth.

8 It’s the way I was raised

I’ve actually heard this. Partly because of where I work. Make a choice to be different. Use your brain. Think for yourself. Next…

9 I was taught this

Not much different and not acceptable. If what you were taught was wrong then you need to find out what is right and make the change to correct it. Anyone else hear the kids from SAE Oklahoma frat. say they only sang that song because they were taught it? And so that’s okay? Nope. Again filter what is appropriate and inappropriate. Use critical thinking. Think until your brain hurts and think more to find out the better way.

10 I don’t have the money

Money is numbers on computers now. Do you really have it anyways? I don’t have money but find ways to get things done. Sometimes it requires compromise and rethinking what is really the goal. If you want something chances are you usually find a way to get it. So put that power to use when overcoming the need for money for other things. Or make more of it. Need ideas on how to? Check out 10 ways here.

11 Other people saying “you can’t do that”

Don’t let others determine your life and tell you what to do. Unless you “have to”. Then do what you must but find out not to have to in the future. Check out Choose Yourself! by James Altucher for more on how.

12 Other people saying “this is the way we’ve always done it”

Doing something for a long time does not make it right or the best way to do it. Try new things and if they don’t work then change it. And change it again if necessary. Be buzzworthy. Be “Disruptive”.

13 Interruption

Interruptions are excuses not to refocus. If you get interrupted find ways to prevent it ahead of time. Headphones. Waking up early and having the quiet of the morning. Going some place to be by yourself. Or just working through interruptions and getting back on task as quick as possible.

What common or uncommon excuses did I leave out and how can we overcome them?


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