Each day on the Baggage Reclaim Facebook Page, I share little snippets of my insights about relationships and after I was tweeted by @AngieMaggieB saying “I may have heard every excuse in the book this week…and then made every excuse for all those excuses.” which inspired me to respond on Twitter and Facebook with:
“Don’t make excuses for other people’s behaviour as you’re assuming you know better because you don’t want to hear the truth. Accept what they have done or said because you can decide if you want to stay or go under real circumstances & reasons. If you’re making excuses for their excuses it means the original excuses were crap.”
Imagine you could strip out all of the excuses and put it in plain English in as short a description as possible: What are they doing?
I remember my relationship with the Mr Unavailable that triggered my epiphany and all I did was make excuses.
For example…with excuses:
My ex only called towards the weekend and wanted to meet/stay over when he had a guys night out in London that same weekend. His work seemed very busy, he was trying to sort out his living arrangements, and I figured he was trying to ‘optimise’ his time by lining up all of his activities.
I also figured he wanted to take things slow. He was half hearted, stopped making an effort, and was worried about his ex discovering that we were dating. I focused on the latter information and decided that it was worries about her that were causing him to behave as he did towards me.
He was fresh out of a relationship, had baggage, and was keen to keep things light. I reasoned that these were near irrelevant because if being fresh out of a relationship mattered or his baggage, he wouldn’t have pursued me…
Call this giving someone way too much credit for their empathy or level of responsibility towards someone.
For example…without excuses:
My ex only called towards the weekend and wanted to meet/stay over when he had a guys night out in London that same weekend – I was a convenient stop off point, not important enough to have plans made with, and great parking…
I also figured he wanted to take things slow. Unless going slowly involves grinding to a halt and moving into reverse, his behaviour showed that our relationship wasn’t going anywhere because he didn’t want it go anywhere that had him ‘too’ committed.
He was half hearted, stopped making an effort, and was worried about his ex discovering that we were dating. So really, we weren’t dating. If we were – it’s a secret that I wasn’t in on…
He was fresh out of a relationship, had baggage, and was keen to keep things light, because he didn’t want anything heavy – we were casual.
The moment I stopped making excuses was the moment I saw what had been in front of my eyes and under my nose if only I’d cared to acknowledge it.
Try it out. Strip out the excuses from their excuses or just strip out all of the excuses and ask yourself what you’re left with and whether you like it. Keep in mind that if you have to make excuses in the first place, it’s likely that you are making an exception to and turning a blind eye to stuff that, under ordinary circumstances, you shouldn’t be.
Think of it as an experiment – spend a week not making excuses. No If’s, But’s, Maybe’s, What if’s, and Say It Isn’t So moments. Think of it as giving yourself your relationship straight, with no chaser – what does it taste like?