Can’t: the Lazy Excuse

Can't: The Lazy Excuse

What is the one word that is suppressing all your progression and future experiences? Can’t.

After reading the article you will learn the difference between can’t and no, and have the tools to completely erase the word can’t from your vocabulary.


Back story: Throughout school the word can’t was a big part of my vocabulary. Dropping can’ts left and right. The word was sitting in my subconscious mind as a default. Rolling out of my mouth whenever something was difficult or uncomfortable.

I believe it is all the times we are told we can’t do something as we grow up. Our parents say it, friends, peers all tells us we can’t do something. Most of the time it is to keep us from doing something stupid because we don’t know any better. Read if you should take a gap year, one of the pros: deprogramming


Around the time of high school, I was learning about the subconscious mind, and how habits form. I already had an established workout routine, and was curious why it was difficult for others to start. Repetition and consistency over long periods make a habit go from the conscious to the subconscious. To begin a new habit you have to think about it and make a conscious effort. After a while it becomes second nature. This is why starting a exercise habit is hard because you have to think about making an effort to put yourself through discomfort. The more you go, the less you think and your body just goes, changing the default.

Can’t is the lazy excuse. Four letters split by an apostrophe after the third will completely stop any attempt of progression.

“Whether you think you can, or you think you can’t, you’re right.”

it’s time to remove that word. Mediation helped reprogram my subconscious mind clearing out all versions of can’t. I would sit sometimes for more than an hour repeating the short two word sentence: I can. Eventually changing my default setting.

Can’t vs No

There is a difference between can’t and no.

Can’t is an excuse. It is a no covered in mud. It shows weakness, and lack of confidence. Every time I hear someone say can’t, I shake my head because I know all the other areas of their life that can’t improve.

No is a decision. No is when you can do something, but feel it is not worth your time. It is a clear answer with no fluff.


Here are a couple simple practices you can do that will have a big impact on your life.

  • For five minutes a day close your eyes and with the rhythm of your breath repeat to yourself I can. Inhale “I”, exhale “can”
  • When you wake up in the morning write down “I can” in a journal, write however many times you want, but make it a daily practice.
  • Write “I can” on your bathroom mirror, or place sticky notes throughout your house.

It’s that simple. When you’re in conversation with other people you will start to notice how often you say can’t. Maybe you will even realize how many missed opportunities passed by, all the destinations and relationships that never happened. New opportunities will come, and now with your new vocabulary you CAN move forward.

Keep Moving Forward

Robbie Knecht

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