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Earlier this year, I took a look back at a turning point in my life to draw inspiration for making this year extraordinary. Now that it’s almost June let’s see how we’re doing with the #YearofNFE.

On the plus side, it hasn’t been a complete failure. I’ve undertaken quite a bit here with Digital Pudding, adding clients, getting stuff done, constantly learning. Progress is being made every day. Still, there’s room for improvement. Quite a bit if you ask me. So, let’s see how far we’ve come, where we need to go, and how to get there.

Where It’s Gone Right

Consciously calling out when an excuse is being made has helped to effect incremental change in my behavior and the behavior of my colleagues and clients. Turning up the intensity, accepting all challenges and making myself accountable has led to some impressive work all around.

It’s true; there have been days where I just wasn’t feeling it and somehow powered through to the breakthrough. Those days have been the most productive and rewarding. Not just because the job got done, but because it easily could have gone away. Taking on the responsibility and owning it makes a huge difference.

Yet the workload of running your own agency has been way more than I expected. So one of the great things to come out of this Year of No Effing Excuses is the adoption of new systems that priorities tasks and help get more done. Less energy is spent figuring out how to start. More energy is spent on actually accomplishing tasks. This helps to keep excuses to a minimum, especially when obligations are pulling you in a thousand different directions at once. This super ability to focus has been a big part of sticking to the Year of No Effing Excuses.

Where It’s Gone Wrong

Too many times, though, things have slipped through the cracks. Tasks roll over for days and weeks. Strategic conversations get postponed indefinitely. Heck, even this blog doesn’t get updated as frequently as it should. That’s 100% on me.

Now approaching halfway through the Year of No Effing Excuses, let’s be honest. It’s easy to find an excuse to do or not to do what you really want to do. Have the extra chocolate because you’ve been good all week. Get back to the website next week because you’re still waiting on some research. Pass up that networking event because you’re too busy. Stop growing your business because it’s too confusing to figure out right now.

These words and many more like them have held me back from really getting done what I’ve wanted to accomplish all year. They’re subtle and sneaky like that. So as we try and improve heading into the third and fourth quarters of the year, I have to get better at identifying real excuses and blowing past them on the way to productivity, creativity and all the good things a digital agency should do.

Turning Around the Year of No Effing Excuses

As good as you’re doing, you can always try and do a little better. It would be easy to complain and bemoan the fact that almost half the year is gone and you’re not where you want to be. Yet that would be making excuses for continuing to make excuses (how meta). On the other hand, you could look at it as a chance to turn things around with over half the year to go. I’m going for the latter.

It’s clear now that excuses can’t be tolerated. Not in any form. Not when it’s my name on the line. Here’s to a renewed commitment to the Year of No Effing Excuses.

As with any movement, some support would be nice. First, you can follow me on Twitter. Then, I welcome you to get on my case and force me to stop making excuses and start making a difference. This is the Year of No Effing Excuses for a reason, after all. It’s time to own it.

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