Wednesday, August 11, 2010

Seven ways to increase your commitment

So you've made a decision. Is it a foregone conclusion that you'll be following through, or have you had the tendency to waffle or waver a bit on this or prior decisions? What do you need to do to REALLY make a commitment, to take the action necessary to achieve it or fulfill it?
  1. Connect it to your life purpose. Think about the really big reasons why you're deciding this. Is this just a fitness program to wear two sizes smaller or is this your method to ensure that you'll be around to play with your great-grandchildren? Same decision, very different motivators.
  2. Write it down and plan it out in detail. Put your exercise commitment in your calendar. Consider the obstacles and develop solutions to overcome them so they won't catch you offguard and send you off track.
  3. Keep the bites manageable. You are unlikely to follow through if it's so big that you won't really believe you can do it. Also consider that small victories give you energy and motivation to pursue bigger victories. Instead of deciding to make a personality (or career, or relationship, or life) overhaul, select one thing to improve at a time and work on that.
  4. Tell someone about your goal or your commitment. It might sound crazy, but sometimes we'll do things to save face in front of other people that we wouldn't do just for our own satisfaction or success. If it's too private or too sensitive to tell a family member or friend, or if you simply don't want to burden them, consider hiring a coach to be your accountability partner.
  5. Do it with a buddy. This is related to the prior point, but in this case you're not just telling another person - they're sharing in the commitment with you. When one person is down the other person can pick them up. And if your decision revolves around an activity that you don't typically like to do (at least not until now) the attraction of seeing your buddy will help you choose to do it anyway.
  6. Pay a lot of money for it. This isn't a recommendation necessarily, just an acknowledgement of what works for some people. If they part with enough of their personal resources that it feels a little painful they're more likely to follow through on getting full value for their investment.
  7. Envision the positive outcome in detail. Think about it in multisensory terms: how will it look, feel, sound, taste, etc.? If it helps you, put a picture of it on your mirror or refrigerator. The emotional impact of the visioning will increase your attachment to the rewards associated with fulfilling your commitment.
Even if this one decision or commitment is relatively small, it could be the foundation for a very big deal. Whenever you make a decision or commitment to yourself (or to others) you create the potential to demonstrate integrity. You will increase your integrity when you make decisions or commitments and follow through consistently on them. When you follow through consistently you will also contribute to your own positive self-image. Positive self-image and growing integrity will help create an upward spiral of commitment and follow-through that increases your influence and success.

No comments:

Post a Comment