When my daughter began making excuses saying she was too tired to go to her dancing classes, I started thinking about what commitment really means in the context of achieving your goals, taking responsibility for your choices and following through on the choices already made.
The dictionary definition of commitment is “the act of binding yourself intellectually or emotionally to a course of action.”
I definitely needed a simpler explanation. So I thought of my own personal definition and explained it to her. Next thing we were in the car on our way to the class. The excuses had miraculously disappeared!
My understanding of commitment is staying loyal to what you said you were going to do long after the mood you said it in has left you. It means that when we commit to a class, a choice, an arrangement or a goal, we have made the decision and that decision is unconditional. Commitment is about taking personal responsibility for our choices and following through. The simplicity and reality of achieving goals and desired outcomes starts with commitment and then slowly becomes reality with dedication and perseverance.
When setting goals and making choices, there are only two questions you need to ask yourself regarding commitment: “Am I in or am I out?”
There are no half measures when it comes to making a commitment to a choice or course of action. After all, am I married or single? Am I employed or unemployed? Am I a vegan or a carnivore?
Making a commitment creates certainty and lays the foundations for planning and strategizing a path which can change your life. If you really want something badly enough, you need to make the choice to commit to whatever it takes to achieve the desired outcome.
Kenneth Blanchard’s explanation is perfect:
“There is a difference between interest and commitment. When you’re interested in something you do it only when it’s convenient. When you’re committed to something you accept no excuses, only results”
To be fully committed requires what I call the Four D’s: Desire, Determination, Dedication and Discipline.
This is what distinguishes people in their quest for success and makes leaders, champions and ordinary people inspirations to others and most importantly to themselves.