What are Reasons and Excuses?Reasons are rational explanations given for thinking in a particular way or for doing a particular activity. They are basically logical justifications in accordance with some motive. While excuses are an attempt to convince oneself or others about the difficulties involved when a promise is not kept or there is lack of progress, or simply, when something is not done. Excuses are often disguised as reasons as the sayings go, " An excuse is a lie disguised as a reason" "An excuse is a skin of a reason stuffed with a lie". This is where we need to be careful and examine the situation properly so that we look for the right reasons and not excuses. Another way of looking at them is.. reasons are needed to do a particular activity, while excuses are reasons to not do it.
When are explanations required?You need to give an excuse or a reason only in two types of situations- one, where you were supposed to do something but ended up with something else and two, where you were not able to do the required activity at all and need some explanation to get you out of the embarrassment, or to make others see why it wasn’t your fault and you should not be blamed for it.
Mistakes happen. Unintentionally too. So we should always reason out why they happened and make others also see the same. Not only to be excused, but also to learn from your mistakes and to know why they happened. But be careful. Sometimes, even if we have a valid reason, some people can look at it as an excuse and you may get a reputation of being irresponsible. Generally, people who make excuses have low credibility and are known to be untrustworthy.
What to do in such a situation?
Chickening out by giving excuses should be the last thing a person should do. We should reason out things rationally and avoid such situations and take responsibility for our actions. If there has been some mistake, in spite of the best of efforts put in, it is better to own up than to give excuses or even reasons for that matter. However, do explain the factors which were not under your control.
How to avoid getting into such situations?
First and foremost, be confident of whatever you do. If you believe in yourself and do your work faithfully and honestly, most of your work is done. In this way you will leave no room for explanations-as reason or excuse. Give in your best. So that at least the factors you can control are working to your benefit. You would not be held responsible for the remaining factors, as they were not in your control. If you have been accused of not being credible enough in the past, you must learn from your mistakes and try even harder to achieve what you missed out before.
Identify what went wrong and how it went wrong.
Be true to yourself when you do so, since “an excuse is worse than a lie, for an excuse is a lie, guarded”. And lying to yourself and being convinced about it is the worst thing to do. Once you have identified you mistakes and weaknesses, work on them to make them your strengths.
Most of us can confuse a reason with an excuse. There can be situations where we may state a reason for not doing something. But think twice about whether it is really a valid reason or just an excuse, which you are making up to satisfy yourself and end-up believing it also. People will keep giving explanations. But the question is will you too do the same or stand out in the crowd and work without them???
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