A friend of mine going through some tough financial times was telling me about the elaborate gift that she “had” to purchase for her daughter’s upcoming birthday. When I suggested that perhaps she cut back this year, she told me that “she had no other choice”. I told her that she absolutely had other choices. She could choose not to pick them, but there were definitely other options available. She did not like hearing it, but it was true.
I am always guilty of using hyperbole (because it’s the best thing ever!), using language that exaggerates by using definitive words “always”, “best”, “everyone”, etc. I often do it tongue in cheek or for emphasis, but exaggerating language also gives us way too many excuses to rely upon.
“I can’t” often just means I won’t, I am too lazy or I am too afraid;
“I have no choice” means that I am unwilling to make another choice or I am committed to a different choice;
“I tried everything” means that a few things that came to the top of my mind didn’t work, so I gave up;
“Everything would be fine if I just had ______” (where the blank is money, education, the right connections, etc.) means that you are looking for a reason to not do the work.
Don’t let your language hold you back by giving you an excuse to fall back on. If you make a choice that’s difficult, own up that you are making the choice, not that you had no others. If you give up, then say that, instead of that you can’t. Once you stop giving yourself the out of hyperbole, your attitude and effort will change.