Do you live life as if you are wearing biege? Is every single wall in the house of your life painted in magnolia? Do you often settle for mediocrity?

The most poisonous impact in your life is not from people who are negative… It is those that are mediocre and settle for it… Those people that are utterly neutral, bland and wear biege and paint everything magnolia. metaphorically speaking of course.

One of my favourite comedy sketches of all time is this one… From the old TV comedy series “Goodness gracious me” where a group of Indian friends “go for an English” and parody the way the typical English lout behaves in an Indian restuarant… The reason I show it here today is because of the way they refer to the food being bland… They keeping requesting bland food and I think it is hilarious….

I tend to think it is relatively east to deal with an intentionally evil or malicious phenomena of some kind… But mediocrity?

It is what stops you truly thriving in business, running an extra mile during your marathon training, getting homework study done and doing that extra hour of reading or having that extra special relationship with someone because of an enhanced perspective and kindness you injected.

It’s the comfort zone. The comfort zone is equal to hell in my book.

I spent some time this weekend just gone by, talking to my students about doing the simplest of things to make their businesses and lives exponentially more successful… Each year I say similar things to these groups of students, people I learn to love and care for enormously… I shout, scream, jump up and down and spoonfeed the simplest of things that people can do to live with some vigour, joy and success… Some fear that. Some bolt at the idea. Some would rather slide their heads back into their shells. I want to shake them!!!

The danger and disaster is to not actually move beyond complacency, apathy and mediocrity.

It is so sad because it is so easy to be extraordinary rather than live life as wasted potential.

The worst thing I possibly imagine is just doing enough to get by, and not tapping into your greatness.

I wonder, are you allowing yourself to stare at the menu of your life and are you ordering something which is bland? The same safe option?

Regular readers of this blog know that I suggest people do things differently in their lives as often as possible… I regularly run an exercise in my members area that gets people doing things differently – when I give students or members of the public the chance to share in it, it is amazing how many shrug their shoulders and skulk away from it heading for a dark corner…

I do it with my clients, ask them to do things differently and many of them experience some resistance, yet want results and an end result that is different… It makes no sense.

When I deliver a weekend on my hypnotherapy training course about being different, about developing a brilliant business… It is often the same weekend when we deal with negative thought disputation from the field of Cognitive Behavioural Hypnotherapy, so that any resistance or inclination to curl up and attempt to be safe and dark and warm in obscurity is dealt with.

I also offer up the following exercise… Refuting excuses.

It is something I suggest people do if they are finding all the right reasons to remain bland, mediocre and not be extraordinary.

Seven Steps To Blast Through Old Limiting Excuses:

Step One: Just ensuring that you are in a comfortable position where you are going to be undisturbed for a while, with your eyes comfortably closed, your arms and legs uncrossed and just focusing on your breathing.

Really notice your breath, just observe it so that you are not interfering with it… Do this for a few moments, just watching it happening. Then start to breathe in a rather unusual way…
As you inhale deeply and slowly, imagine that you are breathing through your body…  imagine that beginning at your feet, you breathe in and upwards through every pore of your body, all the way up to the top of your head…. Feel relaxed throughout your entire body as you breathe out through each pore right down to your toes.

Just enjoy this body breathing process for a couple of minutes and imagine drifting deeper inside your mind and creating a good receptive state.

You can of course use any other technique or strategy to develop a receptive mindset… Or you can go and read my book on self-hypnosis and learn how to really get good at this process.
Inhale upwards through your body, through every pore… feeling that breath move up the entire length of your body… Then exhale downwards from the top of your head, down through your neck, your shoulders, your arms, every pore, your chest, your abdomen, your hips, your legs, your feet…

Once you have spent enough time doing this, move on to the next step…

Step Two: In this receptive state of mind, have a really good think about something important that you wish to achieve in your life. Perhaps think about a desired outcome you’d like in your life but that you are perhaps procrastinating about, or making excuses for not doing.

Importantly at this stage, as you think about that outcome, that goal, or that achievement in your life, think about the actions you’d have to take, the actions that are required for you to accomplish this thing.

When you think about those actions you’d have to take, notice and become really tuned in to yourself… What is it that you actually do instead? What feelings and thoughts come up before you get sidetracked? What re the excuses that you come up with to make it ok not to accomplish?
If the excuses do not directly make themselves obvious, perhaps notice how your thoughts redirect you, and what thoughts do actually redirect. We can refer to those thoughts as excuses for the rest of this exercise.

All the time, notice subtle thoughts, images in your mind, feelings that you feel and be very perceptive of this. being in a good trance state should amplify those and make them more obvious than usual.

You might find that if you attempted to put these feelings or thoughts into words, they possibly sound silly – that is the stuff we are after! They are deep routed rationalisations and excuses that tend to get buried and hidden usually, yet have all the power to keep you off track to achieving that outcome you really do desire.

So get as much of an awareness as possible of these excuses, notice how you perceive them if they have sounds to them, any internal dialogue, feelings and so on… Then when you really have a feel for them, move on to the next step.

Step Three: Now we want to assess the excuses and see what they are up to…

The best way to ascertain the pattern of your excuses is to ask yourself some questions and trust your unconscious mind’s responses… Is it really just an excuse? Do I want to keep this excuse? How does using the excuse serve me? Is there some way that I gain from using this excuse?
if there is some valid value you receive from this excuse, then you can allow yourself to keep those parts of it, you can maintain them should you wish.

With the answers and getting an idea of the purpose of your excuse, move on to the next step.

Step Four: Did you ever say the expression “Hell NO!”?? Did you ever deeply refute and refuse something with a strong sense of “NO!” ??

Now is the time to recall a time when you said or felt like saying “Hell No!”

maybe it was an occasion when you were absolutely disgusted at something, when you totally refuted something, or maybe when something was utterly and completely unacceptable to you. Get in to a state of “Hell No!” and the more disgusted, the more you mean and refute with that sense of “Hell No!” the better!!

Imagine that you spread this state throughout your body. imagine it as a colour. Imagine the sense of it connecting to every cell in your being. Spean as much time as you possibly can to ensure you get a very deep rooted sense of “Hell no!” running through every cell of your being.
Step Five: Imagine your excuse in front of you.

Tread on it.

That’s right, stamp on it. Stomp on it. jump and down viciously on it. Use all the mustered up power of your “hell no” state and bounce up and down on that excuse.

Pick up and throw it to the ground. Tear it in two, cast it to the floor again and stamp ferociously upon it.

Keep stomping. keep stamping. Unleash every ounce of your “hell no” state upon that empty excuse. make it sorry! Only move on when you are sure as possible that you have got all that pent up state unleashed on that excuse and it is fully destroyed.

Step Six: Have a good test to make sure you did this.

Think about your goal, your desired outcome or that thing that you want to achieve.
Notice what happens when you imagine taking the actions that move you toward that outcome. Notice what you feel right now, what thoughts you have and what images come into your mind as you think about it.

Get a real sense to see if there are any other excuses lurking in the darkness somewhere. If you get a flavour of any, then return to the earlier steps and run through the process again. Think about how any lingering excuses can interfere with the very enjoyment of your life, how they can be hurdles to your accomplishments and leave your life a lot less satisfying.

When you are sure that you are free of those last remnants of excuses in relation to this outcome, then move on to the next step.

Step Seven: Remind yourself o your state of “hell no” and how you used this with such conviction. think about a time in your future, ideally the next occasion when you will start working on this goal, or moving toward that outcome… Just imagine that as you start doing that thing, you smash the last remnants of the old excuse with a massive “Hell NO!” response… Then imagine watching yourself doing that thing, taking that action, leading that life and accomplishing that.

Enjoy the beautiful feelings you get with knowing that you get that done in the end and how wonderful it feels.

Once you have enjoyed enough of that, wiggle your fingers and toes and open your eyes.

Then – and this is important – go and take an action that is undeniably convincing to you that you have gotten rid of all those old excuses and start hatching your plans for a happier life. Do that now. Today!

Refute mediocrity. Refute blandness. Bin your biege clothes, laugh out loud, break out of some shackles, paint at least one wall a different colour to magnolia or get a floral print roll of wallpaper… Snap out of it, rise up, prove to yourself you are more than that.