By Now

Zechariah Newman —  November 19, 2013 — 9 Comments

“By now” is probably one of the worst string of two words in the English language. These two words can cause us not to start, or cause us to give up. “By now” adds to frustration and takes away our confidence. These two words reveal our expectations which are sometimes unreasonable. It is a for sure sign of backward looking instead of looking forward in hope. We use “by now” when we are making excuses not to try or trying to reason out why we should stop.

smoky sunset

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Here are a few examples:

“I should have more email followers by now.”

“I expected to be further along by now.”

“If I was going to be a firefighter, I would have already gotten my degree by now.”

“If I was going to be an artist, I would be better known by now.”

We use “by now” as justification for why we can’t shoot for our dream. After all we would be able to do it easily, but we were just too late for the game. “If only” starts to slip in and we are trapped in between victim thinking.

The thing about the phrase “by now” is somehow a timeless phrase. Somehow we use it when we are 20 and when we are 65. The older we are the more we laugh when those younger than us say “by now.” If we looked back, however, those two wicked words were used by us back then. How could we have lied to ourselves all these years? How could we think back then that we were in a “by now” phase? Maybe now it is a lie too?

“By now” is used as rationalization to quit. You can tell that you are in this mode when talking about this new thing that you tried. I was in this mode a couple of weeks ago. I was thinking, “I thought I would be further along by now.” How powering and fulfilling that felt bouncing around in my noggin. Charged up and energized to write. Ok maybe not; I felt defeated before I took another step.

So what I want you to do is recognize that this phrase, “by now” has entered into your mind and passed by your lips. Choose to remove this from your vocabulary and know that it won’t happen overnight. Slowly and surely we can conquer that liar and rat, “by now.” Be blessed on your journey.

What are some “by now’s” that you have conquered or still say?

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  • Words dictate the course of our lives. That’s why I read the book of Proverbs. Thanks Zech for breaking down this pernicious word. I’ve used this quite often when I see other bloggers who have pumped out new ebooks: “I should have written my book by now.” Instead of mourning over the past, your post inspired me to get rid of this liar and rat and start focusing. Superb post!

    • Thanks Paul! I struggle herewith the same “by now” as you. When you do write that book it will be awesome. You will conquer that enemy:)

  • I am famous for using the statement ‘by now’. I used it a couple of days a go. Thanks for the encouragement to help conquer this debilitating phrase.

    • Thank you Bernard. I used it about my email followers that is why I wrote this:) Thanks for stopping by, God bless.

  • By now, I should have published two books…

    • That is a good Lawrence. Thanks for adding to the conversation. Blessings today.

  • Good stuff, Zech. By now’s are like “what if’s” – both poisonous self-talk. Needed to hear this today. God bless.

    • Glad it hit you when you needed it. Go get after it today:)

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