Keeping a commitment is more important than your own convenience. I will explain, by way of a story.
My nephew, Val Abaté, who is a senior in high school, normally rides home with me when I go to his varsity soccer games. On one particular night I showed up for his game and he said that he would NOT be riding home with me tonight, because he was in charge of the equipment getting back to school (along with his coach and one other player).
Val had made a commitment.
He was planning on taking the bus, but then, after a few minutes passed, he said he was going to check with somebody else to see if they could take over his responsibility instead.
A little while later I mentioned to him quietly, as the game was going on, that keeping his commitment was more important then the convenience of getting a ride home with me.
He ended up taking the bus and following through on his commitment.
I am proud of this kid for many reasons, and this was a prime example of one.
Very often, we human beings will take the path of least resistance, or we will switch gears midstream to ditch our responsibility, because it all of a sudden becomes inconvenient for us. Of course, common sense comes into play here, as well.
I realize that there are often extenuating circumstance, where to switch gears is completely appropriate, in favor of convenience. However, I think that there's a cultural issue in our society, in general, where we will back out of a commitment needlessly. This includes commitments that we make to ourselves.
A couple years ago, I met a guy who was wearing a wristband that says "because I said I would".
Long story, short, we got into a conversation about commitment.
He ended up giving his wristband to me.
The timing was perfect.
I met that guy on a boating trip in the San Diego harbor, just after I made a choice to start getting more fit and healthy. I knew that it was going to be a challenge to keep the promises I had made to myself, so this wristband - which is still on my wrist today - has been a very good reminder for me that I follow through because I said I would.
Brilliant, talented, gifted and successful people abound.
And yet, I see, time and again, that this simple characteristic seems to be dying in our culture.
In our fast-paced and competitive world today, we can set ourselves apart by being the person who does what they say they are going to do.
We can be that person who stands in integrity.
Very often, word and deed do not match up.
Those who get ahead in this life, are often the same people who stand firmly in their own integrity. We teach people to trust us, to count on us, or to see us as incompetent, or wishy-washy.
Tom Peters, Author of in "Search Of Excellence", said something that stuck with me when I was younger, starting out in business.
I was at a conference he spoke at.
Tom said something to this effect: "you are either distant or you are extinct".
In business and in life it's integrity and commitment that make an impact, gets noticed, therefore making a difference in building trusted, and loyal relationships. And in business today, those two cornerstones are the coin of the realm for us all.
I would love to hear examples from your life that illustrate how you have stepped up to keep a commitment you made, even when it was inconvenient. I'd love to hear everyday examples from your life, including your children, your friends, family, coworkers.
Thank you for stopping by.