The Weight of Reasonability

We typically talk about being reasonable as though it were a good thing. If we break that word apart, we find ourselves left with the words "reason" and "able," which literally means that we have the ability to come up with reasons -- reasons for why we do what we do and reasons for why we don't do what we say we're going to do. And, we tend to think our reasons are pretty legitimate, don't we? We'll go to the mat fighting for our reasons and we'll defend them as though they were actually worth defending. But are they worth it, really? The more important question is: do you want to give power to your reasons, no matter how legitimate you think they might be, or do you want to give power to your word?

Reasons get in the way of our natural ability to be extraordinary; they give us excuses to under-perform or, worse, to not perform at all. Think about one of your New Year's resolutions, whether it's one you made this year or in years past. Why is there such a low success rate (12%) in achieving what it is we set out to accomplish? Do our goals become any less important? (Likely not.) It's the significance we attach to our reasons that makes them more important than our goals. It's like we sell out on what's really important to us in favor of our reasons and excuses. And where does that get us? Nowhere, fast. And slowly but surely, it gets us to another year, another list of resolutions.

Consider that it's time to be un-reason-able. No more reasons (and no more ability to create them)! How important are the commitments you make and the goals you set for yourself? How often can people count on you to do what you say you're going to do? And how often can you count on yourself? What would it be like to actually follow-through on something rather than coming up with excuses for why you can't -- and trying to convince others of the same?

You may not realize it, but your word really means something, if not to you, than to the people in your life. Can people count on you for the commitments you make or can they count on you for your excuses? We all have a track record in this area. Do you know yours? If not, simply ask the people in your life -- they can tell you.

Being reasonable doesn't work when you're up to something. Truth be told, it doesn't work when you're up to anything. Try unreasonable on for size. It'll likely be a tight fit at first, but over time, you're sure to look and feel terrific as you begin dropping your reasons and excuses. And, you'll be amazed by what'll you'll accomplish simply because you said you would. (The fitting room is now available.)