Today, I’m going to give you a bit of rough and tumble. Not to be mean or anything (well, maybe just a bit 😊) but get ready, because I’m not going to mince my words at all!

I want to look straight into your eye and challenge you: What is getting in your way? What is your reason to not do what you know you should be doing.

No judgement, you are in good company. 🙂

Let’s look at the most common ones:

Time: No time!

Here is some simple math that I want to share with you…everybody in this world has the exact same number of hours….what differs is how they utilise those hours….so, we’ve got to stop using time as our alibi.

When I am short on time, I just drop watching TV from my schedule…it helps to save hours straightaway.

I recently spent 2 weeks with someone, who would start lots of conversations with, “But I have no time”.

My two questions to someone who views themselves having no time is, “How can you reprioritise what you do throughout the day to make the time work for you?” and “Are you using lack of time as a convenient alibi to not do what you know you should be doing?” Eventually, everything in life comes down to our decision on holding ourselves accountable for our life.

Money: If your basic needs are met, is money getting in your way of pursuing your dreams?

I am not talking about situations, where someone is struggling to put food on the table or pay for their rent. NO! In those situations, obviously, survival comes first. But if you are not struggling to survive, this section on money is for you. 

It is mind-boggling how we buy the stuff they do not even need but when it comes to investing in ourselves, acquiring a new skill or pursuing a passion, money feels like a roadblock.

Here is an alternative that I find useful.

Can you invest, say $100 to acquire a new skill, or $200? I am sharing with you just a number…you can replace these numbers in your head with the relevant currency and the amount.

I live in London and let’s see how much is $200. $200 is approximately £140. A coffee costs about 3.5 pounds…. it means that if I save on my coffee 40 times, I can save £140. 40 coffees is just over 3 coffees in a month…or if I buy one coffee less every week I will be able to save more than £140.

I can invest these £140 money in a skill that is going to help me for the rest of my life. I could buy an online course, join an organisation like the Toastmasters, invest in a professional membership or do some charity work.

(If you are not a coffee person, you can save money on something else. e.g. When I am travelling short distances, instead of taking public transport I cycle; it gives me a bit of exercise and also enables me to save money.)

What is the bottomline here?

We’ve got to stop giving money as the excuse…We do not have to buy the most expensive program on this planet…no, we can just start learning from someone who is a few steps ahead of us and then we can scale it up.

People: For most of us, It is always someone else’s fault, isn’t it?

Married people…are you listening to me???

Please stay with me because this is where it gets really good.

Is it your kids or your husband or your wife who stops you from going for the exercise class, or writing or painting or joining a local club….have you ever explored alternatives…may be picking up an activity which you can pursue as a family or working around your schedule so that all of you can have some time for yourself? Have you ever considered saying ‘no’ to them?

For e.g. One of the things that works for me is to reshuffle my schedule and drop things that are not as significant. My husband, Abhishek, and I also pursue or own interests concurrently: he does gardening while I go off to my exercise class but we do not get in each-other’s way. 

The second classic about holding other people responsible is blaming our parents. Whatever our parents did or didn’t or could but didn’t is a separate discussion but in all fairness, there’s got to be a shelf life on blaming our parents. Because you know what….they may not have encouraged that we stay fit or pursue a hobby or a passion, but we can make that choice now. We may not have been able to take certain decisions when we were little but as adults, we certainly can. 

We probably lived with them until we were 18 or so, then moved out for college or work and started taking our own decisions. What happened for 18 years of our life does not have to define what happens to the rest of it, does it?

Can I say…every time you and I hold someone else responsible, we are just getting in our own way to move forward? It may feel ‘good’ in the short-term and massage our ego but is in no one’s highest good.

We must stop doing that for no better reason other than knowing that we can do better.

You deserve better.

I deserve better.

We all do.

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