A commitment is a really serious agreement to do
something. It means putting the full force of personal integrity behind an
action. Keeping commitments, even when difficult, creates positive power in the
world. It's all a question of priorities.
We all make commitments every day. Some seem small and
insignificant-agreed upon time to meet, a promise to run an errand or a promise
to follow-up. Others are ostensibly bigger and more important-a formal contract
or legal document, etc. It is important to consider all commitments equally
important, because this is the way trust is built and maintained. A person's
reputation is built upon their ability to make and keep commitments. Your life
will work better when commitments are carefully made and diligently kept.
There are five key factors in making and keeping
All Commitments Are Important: When you agree to do
something-do it as agreed. When you agree to meet someone, be there on time.
When you fail to keep a commitment you fail yourself first and the other person
Be Careful What You Agree To: Many people find it
easier to say yes instead of no. It is far better to agree to what you can do,
than saying yes to please someone at the moment and later fail your commitment
because of being over-committed or because you have difficulty saying no.
Manage Your Commitments: Keep a log of your
commitments-Write them down. You may have great intentions, but if you forget
to do what you agreed to do, the result is the same as your 'Choosing' not to
keep your commitment.
Renegotiate When You Are Unable to Keep Your
Commitment: When you discover you are unable or unwilling to complete an
agreement, go to the other party/parties and renegotiate.
Manage By Agreement: Instead of telling someone to do
something, ask if they would agree to doing it and by when. You have a greater
chance it will get done if you ask rather than tell.
By paying careful attention to the commitments you
make, tracking them and developing the habit of keeping all your commitments
you will be known as a person of integrity. Your life and the world around you
work in direct proportion to the quality of your commitments.
Do you honor your commitments? Are you always making
commitments to people or yourself that you don’t want to make or have no
intention of following thru on? Pay attention to what you’re committing to and
to whom you’re making those commitments.
Making commitments, keeping commitments, and repeating
this cycle will increase trust. You need to do what you say you are going to
do. However, this can also be difficult if you over-compromise and do not
deliver. If you do this repeatedly, you may not have a second or third chance
to regain the trust of professional and personal people in your life because you
will lose all credibility.
Now, do not let this scare you, you cannot be afraid to
make commitments because commitments are part of everyday life and business.
Making commitments builds hope; keeping commitments builds trust.
Your integrity to the commitments you make is one of
the most important factors in achieving a consistent level of joy and
happiness. Although you may not be aware of it consciously, if you have a bunch
of broken commitments over the last day/week/month/year/decade, you’re
energetically drowning in the weight of that lack of integrity.
You know when you’re not doing the stuff you say you’re
going to do—whether it was getting up at a certain time this morning, working
out, going somewhere, helping a friend or colleague or following a certain
routine, whatever it is. To the extent you’re not honoring those commitments;
you are not be true to yourself and others, Simple as that.
Until you find a way to somehow increase your willpower
or self-discipline, you will still keep failing to keep your commitments. Discipline
requires time, effort and respect within yourself. Every kept promise to others and yourself
creates more self-trust which builds the foundations of more discipline in the
Disciplined people have created a high degree of self-trust between
their various states of mind. This self-trust allows them to carry out orders
made in the past even when they don’t feel like it. When you find yourself
continually failing to keep a commitment then you either need to start smaller or
add more leverage. Either the law you enacted is too strict to be upheld or the
punishments and rewards you have in place aren’t enticing enough to follow it.
The good news is the solution is simple and you can
change everything by starting right now to honor your commitments.… Taking an
inventory of your commitments today is the beginning of reconnecting your
energy to them and taking action.
Make a list on paper of all the commitments you have
outstanding right now. What you made in past that you haven’t done. You have
the choice of now deciding which ones you are no longer committed to honoring
and decide which ones you will re-commit to honoring. Get completion with these
and start to honor them so you can move forward with integrity to do what you
committed yourself to do.
Fulfill on your commitment. Take pride in doing what
you agreed to do. Realize that being acknowledged as a person of integrity will
ultimately make your personal and professional life better.
we make to ourselves and to others, and our integrity to those commitments, is
the essence and clearest manifestation of our proactivity.” ~ Stephen R. Covey
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