Some people live by keeping their commitments. Unfortunately, others suffer through them.
When breaking promises go from an occasional mishap to a regular occurrence, it can create havoc in your life.
Before you know it your integrity becomes questionable, your promises become meaningless, and your good intentions are forgotten.
What’s worse is that keeping commitments can be a real challenge for you.
It may not be as simple as just starting to commit better. But instead, it may take more extensive time to understand your flaws and create new and better habits.
For those who do not suffer with keeping commitments, it may not be easily understood why it is hard for you. Some people just keep commitments naturally.
So try not to get too focused on others when trying to figure out yourself.
Instead, focus on yourself and your desire for personal improvement as most important.
Work to overcome your commitment challenges and create a real change in your life for the better.
Why Is Keeping Commitments So Hard?
Keeping commitments is hard when you don’t have the desire, ability, or motivation to do it.
Particularly when you have options that are easier or feel better than the commitment in front of you.
You may have committed to getting up early and helping someone move. But staying in bed and sleeping longer is much more attractive and easier than any of that.
When you commit to things that you really don’t want to do, you essentially are forcing your body to move through what your mind does not accept.
Some may say your commitment is more important than your personal pleasure. But tell your mind and body that when you are fighting your way out of bed.
There can also be times when you make a commitment that you simply shouldn’t have.
You may have over-extended yourself or misjudged your capability or availability. Therefore the structure of your commitment was faulty from the beginning.
There is also the occasion when you commit as a courtesy. Even when you don’t want to do it, your compassion for the other person persuades you to say you will.
The issue here can be that your emotion is short-lived. And when faced with taking action, your momentum has already died off.
You may still have love and compassion for the person you made the promise to. But that emotion does not transition into fuel to do the task or motivation to keep the promise.
Desire, motivation, availability of time or energy, and even a lapse in memory can all contribute to broken promises and failed commitments.
And with all these obstacles on the trail, it can simply be hard to keep up.
But that doesn’t mean that commitment isn’t important. Or that you should be resolved of having or keeping commitments because it is difficult to do.
Benefits of Keeping Your Commitments
Keeping your commitments can benefit you with an overall sense of increased life satisfaction.
When you make a commitment and see it through, you will gain more self-respect and self-confidence.
Repeatedly failing to keep commitments, however, can cause you to feel like a failure, unreliable, and undependable to you.
Remember, not all promises are to others. You also can make and break promises with yourself.
This can impact your confidence to try new things, take on challenges, or make decisions without the co-sign of another person.
You simply don’t trust yourself more than you trust another actually reliable person.
It is important to know that you can rely on yourself and your own capabilities.
Believe that you have the ability to generate the mindset, thoughts, and behaviors to achieve your goals.
There are also benefits to others of your learning how to keep commitments and following through on what you say you’re going to do.
Keeping commitments will impact the feeling of safety and security others have with you. Others trust you to honor your word, be present when needed, or essentially walk it like you talk it.
A person who honors their promises is honest and possesses integrity. At least this is a common perception. Adopting this behavior extends this perception to you.
It can also be the way that others interpret you as loving and caring towards them.
Committing to tasks, requests, and obligations is not easy and even harder to do with regular consistency.
But learn to appreciate the personal and interpersonal benefits of changing your habits and keeping commitments.
Experience greater optimism in your ability to self-improve and confidence in taking on new responsibilities. Really know and believe yourself to be a person who gets things done.
Examining If You Are Ready to Be More Committed
As with any habit or behavior change, to become more committed you first need to acknowledge your obstacles.
Are you disorganized?
Do you suffer from people-pleasing too much?
Do you make too many commitments?
Are you easily distracted or have trouble saying no?
It is important to be honest with yourself in order to find the root of your problem.
From there, you can develop a plan on how to improve.
Take some time to sit down and figure out what is holding you back. Once you know your obstacles, you can start to work on developing solutions.
Examining who you are as a person and how you manage your life, in general, can help you gain an understanding of how your keep on top of your usual daily tasks.
You can also learn how you already address unexpected or adverse situations.
Do you tend to figure things out on your own?
Or do you lean on others to get your objectives done?
These details make a difference.
Because if you are not always equipped to keep yourself in order or honor your personal commitments to yourself, you likely are not going to spontaneously develop this skill for others.
Once you have a better handle on who you are and how you handle your life, you can put this knowledge to use in building your new “keeping commitments strategy”.
How to Improve Your Commitment Skills
No matter where you are on your readiness scale, there are some tips that you can put into place today to help you be more committed and conquer keeping your promises more frequently.
- Set smaller goals rather than making grandiose plans that are difficult to keep up with
- Review your intended commitment, with yourself or the other person, to determine exactly how you will get the task accomplished before making a promise to get it done
- Visualize the successful outcome of keeping your commitment
- Talk about your commitment out loud to assist with memory recall of what’s on your to-do list
- Find an accountability partner who will help you stay on track
- Write down all significant details of your commitment in a prominent place including the deadline
- Set reminders in your electronic calendar
A Bonus Tip on Using Planning to Improve Commitment
If you find that you often start projects with the best of intentions but then fail to follow through, planning may be your issue.
Using a planner can be an excellent way to record all of your intended tasks, keep them organized, and serve as a reminder when your day gets busy.
Organizing your planner by separating out your priorities can also be helpful.
For example, you might have a section for work commitments, family commitments, and personal commitments.
This will help you see at a glance what needs to be done, when, and for who.
It can also help to keep your non-negotiable commitments in one place so that you can easily refer to them.
Using a planner on a regular basis, reviewing it at regular intervals, and checking off your tasks when completed can create significant order in your life.
For those that suffer with meeting commitments due to disorganization or frequent memory lapses, using a planner can be a game-changer!
Transitioning Into a Committed Person
If you have been pretty poor at keeping commitments for some time, it is likely that you not only have a poor image of yourself around commitment but others do too.
It is important not to lose your momentum for improvement because of your past. And even more important is that you don’t let negative self-talk or others’ comments take you away from your goal.
Keep focused on your end-game and reflect on any positive changes that you make in keeping commitments along the way, big or small.
If you feel that your past broken commitments have caused tension with others that you care about in your life, let them know that you are actively working on improvement.
Listen to any suggestions that others may have for you on your new commitment journey. And don’t shy away from taking responsibility for your past actions so as to work actively on rebuilding trust.
No one is perfect in all aspects of their life, but take heed that working on improving yourself and improving your relationship with others is worthwhile and commendable.
Keeping commitments is an important way of showing up for yourself and others. By committing to your commitments fully you demonstrate integrity to others and build self-confidence within yourself.
Being honest about what you are capable of doing and understanding how you manage your life obligations overall can support you in your endeavors to be a better-committed person overall.
Start small, be consistent, and share your intentions and your wins with others. Building the habit of commitment may take diligence but the wins are worth the effort.
What are your thoughts? Have you come up with ideas to improve how you commit to your commitments since reading this blog post? Let us know in the comments below!