When we think of past wars, we think of men.
You rarely hear a story about a female war hero. A woman named Harriet was born into slavery. She managed to escape and find sex-on-the-beach freedom. Most would be happy with that. Not Harriet.
Freeing herself wasn’t enough.
In the 20th century she used an underground railroad and a series of safe houses to help other slaves become free. In the process she found out her brothers were still trapped in Maryland as slaves.
She decided to go help them. Everyone told her not to. They gave her all the perfect excuses to ignore her brothers and stay safe.
She told them to bugger off and went anyway.
When she found her brothers they didn’t want to escape slavery. They were comfortable. They’d got used to their lack of freedom. They had every excuse as to why slavery “wasn’t so bad.” Wild.
Harriet didn’t give a crap. She freed her brothers anyway. They went on an epic journey full of close calls and near-death experiences. It seemed crazy, even risky. But she refused to let excuses win.
By the end of their journey her brothers were free. They lived a great life thanks to Harriet’s skill of not falling for BS excuses. Badass.
We can accept our excuses and die a million tiny deaths, or we can fight through them and reach greatness.
People are full of sh*t
Even if you don’t work in sales, your life will be full of times when you have to persuade a person or a group of people of an idea.
If you’re not careful you’ll fall for people’s excuses.
Humans have endless reasons why we can’t do something. We are geniuses at coming up with fake stories and justification for not taking action. Staying the same is easier than changing.
And if you want to achieve any level of success in life, you have to help create some small change in the world. That means you’ve got to fight against the resistance and other people’s excuses.
The #1 skill you must develop
There’s a quote that drives everything I do.
A sale always happens. Either you sell the other person on your solution or they sell you on their excuse — Alex Hormozi
I reckon this quote has made me at least $1M in the last 2 years.
It’s so easy to give in when you hear an excuse like this:
- “It’s not the right time.”
- “I’m busy.”
- “I’m sick.”
- “I’m a <insert victim label>.”
You can either fight back and challenge these excuses or accept them. What I’ve realized is 99% of opportunities/asks will come with an initial response that is one of these excuses.
That means you might be hearing a lot of perceived noes or thinking no one has any money to work with you or buy your product…when the reality is the opposite.
Remember: the first answer to anything is an excuse.
Your job is to get past the first answer and overcome excuses. I’ll say it again in case you weren’t listening. You may hate sales but you have no choice. Take the word “sales” and replace it with “persuasion.”
You either ethically use persuasion or you’ll discover struggle town.
The easiest framework to beat someone’s excuses
The reason we don’t challenge people’s excuses is because it’s uncomfortable.
We’re afraid of failure, rejection, or offending someone.
But those who are offended need to be offended more often. The problem is with them, not you. The framework I use to challenge people’s excuses is to remember that I’m doing it for a noble reason.
By challenging another person’s excuses, I’m helping them change and get whatever benefit I have to offer them.
Letting their excuses win is letting them lose.
When you think of excuses like that it’s 10x easier to challenge them and not feel afraid.
Excuses aren’t destroyed in round one
This one blows my mind.
We think that after we respond to an excuse that’s it. The other person either changes their ways or it’s over. Life isn’t that simple.
The key to beating excuses is to understand that you have to follow up. You have to challenge a person’s excuses then give them 24–48 hours to think on what you’ve said so it sinks in.
Too many excuses win because there isn’t enough follow-up. If I try and persuade someone to change in some way, I expect to follow them up at least 4–6 times.
I don’t just give them one chance and walk away.
I’ve found my success rate is extremely high because this level of follow-up is uncommon. So even if you’re not great at persuasion, like me, you can have a lot more success with simple, dumb follow-ups.
How conquering excuses can make you wealthier
Wealth is a reflection of value.
The highest value thing you can do is help a person, group, or organization change. And when you do your net worth goes up as a result. Change-makers are rare and those who are successful at it can charge a fortune.
I’d argue beating people’s excuses is the most important life skill you can develop. Today I beat someone’s excuses after 3 weeks of talking with them via email. It came with a massive payday — and none of it involved high IQ or superhuman tech skills.
I just kept asking, following up, and gently challenging.
The root cause of the person’s problem, as always, was fear. When I made them see that fear is normal and a sign of good things, their entire mindset changed. So they decided to work with me.
Stop falling for people’s excuses.
Challenge people and your value will explode beyond anything you could’ve ever imagined.