Making excuses

My daughter is 11 and it seems she is always complaining or making excuses about why she didn’t do something perfectly. I think she is a perfectionist and the complaining acts as a relief valve for her emotions.

I want the best for her, and tend to “coach” when I should just listen and be empathic. However complaining to me is fingernails down a blackboard. I react first then think about the true message next. There must be some fear that my kid will grow up making excuses for failure.

This piece could go that success has on no excuses. I believe that. But do I also believe “No pressure honey – just be perfect”? We succeed through failure. Making mistakes is what leads to success.

Instead I wonder about the excuses I make. Surely if children do it, we all must. And I must be really good if I think I don’t.

Well I’m 10kg overweight. There’s plenty of excuses in that part of my life.

What excuses am I making in my marriage? My business? My friendships? My professional life?

So I’ll give myself 45 seconds to be bummed out by the realisation I’m not perfect. Now I pick myself up and choose 3 things I will make no excuses for in January 2011. Today I will do something about 1 of those 3.

Hat-tip to Rich Stoner at Elite Basketball Training for blogging about Thinking of Making Excuses.

Warhawk Matt Scott in Nike “No excuses” commercial