30 Excuses to Kick to the Curb

by Alli Polin on February 25, 2014

Make the Leap from Excuses to Action

It’s easy to have a great idea that lights you up.  It’s much harder to go after it and make your idea your reality.  It takes commitment, confidence and creativity but it also takes a boatload of work not to mention an “I-know-I-can” attitude.

In the early 1990s I had a wowza of an idea – an internet cafe!  I know what you’re thinking… ummm, Alli, cybercafés are dead. Yeah!  Of course they are, but for a time they were both hot and necessary.  Here’s the thing, I had the idea before I saw one.  This is not a story about how I opened the first internet café and rode that sucker for as long as it was viable.  This is the story of how I didn’t.  What did I do?  I bought a really big, thick and complex book on LANs and WANs, kept it on my bedside for a while and eventually in a drawer.  Dream, gone.

What replaced my dream of awesome coffee and reliable internet access?  Excuses. 

If you’re human, (hopefully that’s the case – I’m not writing for robots or zombies!) you have probably made up an excuse or two or 30 about why your idea is a bad one and could never fly, right?  Let’s get those excuses out in the open.  You’re not the first person to convince yourself to stop short of creating a meaningful change or launching a new business idea.  Why not be the person that kicks the lies to the curb and makes things happen?

30 Excuses to Lose Today

1.  I’m not ready
2.  Too many other people are already doing it
3.  I’m just not as good as some others
4.  It’s not the right time
5.  It will take too much time
6.  I don’t have the money
7.  I have too many other things to do
8.  I’m too tired
9.  It’s a silly idea
10. I need to be more serious
11. It’s too hard
12. If it was a good idea, someone would have done it already
13. People depend on me. I don’t have time for playing around
14. People will laugh at me if I tell them my idea
15. I’m just a (your title here) how could I possibly be a leader?
16. Who will care about what I have to say?
17. My time is better spent playing Candy Crush than investing in a pipe dream
18. I can’t
19. There is someone else that’s better
20. This is as good as it gets
21. It’s impossible without a team
22. It’s too big
23. It’s too small
24. I’ll work hard and won’t make a splash
25. Nobody will care
26. My ideas are lousy
27. I don’t know what to do
28. I’m not creative
29. Nobody is in my corner
30. Can one person really make a difference?

Any of these sound familiar?  What are some of your other favorite excuses?  Who’s ready to raise their hand with me and dump the excuses?  

There’s no time like now to create what you most want.  Why wait?

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{ 14 comments… read them below or add one }

Lalita Raman February 25, 2014 at 6:34 am

Excuses sometimes are the way to avoid things that you know you got to do but are not excited by it or driven by the purpose. I know when I don’t see a reward or can’t connect to it in an excited way, I tend to make excuses. Going on a hike, being healthy, having a good workout is not among my list of excuses.

Most tend to make excuses when either the reward ( our brain likes reward) is not seen or when one knows one has got to do it but can’t be excited about it.

Liked your style of bringing up this topic Alli


Alli Polin February 25, 2014 at 7:13 am

Lalita –

I make TONS of excuses when I’m really procrastinating. Knowing why something matters and truly is a great place to drop the excuses and take inspired action instead.

Thanks so much for sharing your experience and insights too!


Carl February 25, 2014 at 7:29 am

Hi Alli, another great post – what’s really interesting when you start peeling those excuses back – most are preconceptions that have been handed down from generation to generation. Difficult to push through – but not impossible.
The awareness you have raised is the first step –

Best regards,


Alli Polin February 25, 2014 at 8:45 am

Thanks for pointing that out, Carl. So many of these excuses do get passed down from generation to generation. Makes me all the more aware of the seeds I’m planting with my own children today so they can break with excuses as they grow.



Grenae Thompson February 25, 2014 at 8:49 am

Your idea was way better than my bubble umbrella – don’t ask! This is a post I will probably print & put on my refrigerator and on my office memo board. A powerful reminder we all need to hear daily. Thanks!


Alli Polin February 25, 2014 at 8:58 am


I can only imagine your bubble umbrella – sounds like a sure winner on Shark Tank!

It’s a reminder to me too. Stopping short of what’s possible isn’t a choice that I’m willing to live with any longer. Glad you’re with me!


~ Alli


Kate Nasser, The People Skills Coach™ February 25, 2014 at 10:01 am

WONDERFUL post Alli. It reads like a universal list of inner fears. One of your best ever with its non-accusing truth.

I add one thing to the momentum you’ve started here:

As each person reads each line, I suggest they put the phrase: “So what!” at the end of the line. Read your list every single morning and see the way it will actually change their outlook.

I just love this post.


Alli Polin February 25, 2014 at 6:26 pm

Thanks, Kate!

Excuses really are our inner fears that are masked as “reasons.” When I read this list I see a lot less reason and a lot more of a saboteur whispering in my ear throwing things off track.

Great add too! So what! is a great way to tell the saboteur who’s the boss.

Appreciative of your sharing and insights!


LaRae Quy February 25, 2014 at 12:43 pm

Powerful post, Alli!

It’s amazing how we can find all these excuses to NOT do something when it would be so much more productive to find even more reasons to JUST DO IT!


Alli Polin February 25, 2014 at 6:27 pm

YES!! I’ve been reflecting on that a lot lately. We need to find the reasons WHY and not only why NOT. It’s the why that will put a spring in our step and help us move with purpose. Why not brings too much negativity to truly find success.

Thanks, LaRae!


Terri Klass February 25, 2014 at 2:05 pm

It is so easy to make excuses when we are not confident and uneasy about how things will work out.

I know a leader who won’t take risks without having a high probability of a successful outcome. The thing is we can’t possibly know the outcome without putting our ideas to the test.

Make the leap!!

Loved the post, Alli!


Alli Polin February 25, 2014 at 6:29 pm

How funny, Terri! Even when we’re sure we know the outcome, we still can’t control it! Even calling a “sure thing” a risk tells a lot about this leader’s fears. Energy comes when we harness that funny feeling in our stomach and instead of making it go away by backing down we push through to the next level.

Thanks for adding your insight here!


Jon Mertz February 26, 2014 at 6:42 am

Excuses are just another form of a rationalization to sit on the sidelines. “What would I write about?” “How would my insights be different?” We all have unique experiences and we need to jump into the arena to do good things and enhance our life (other life) experiences!

Thanks, Alli, for nudging us forward!


Alli Polin February 26, 2014 at 7:17 am

Absolutely, Jon! Holding back makes oh-so-much-sense when you buy into excuses. Problem is excuses rarely invite us to play bigger, make a stronger impact or develop more meaningful relationships. Not now usually becomes not ever. There really is no time better than today to put yourself out there. We ALL have something to add and I’m so glad that you’ve shared here!

Thanks so much!


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