The Commitment Slip ‘n Slide
Do you say you commit to things? To people, to challenges, to exercise, to eating well? What is the truth?
If you’re like most people, you have the best intentions when you commit to something. You say you are going to meditate every day. You vow to exercise four days a week. You are going to cut sugar for an entire month.
Then, a few days in, you mess up once. You decide to sleep instead of meditate in the morning. Your schedule got crazy so you only exercised three days a week. You eat half a free donut sitting around at work.
You recommit, then a few days later, things slide again. You skip two days of exercise. You went to bed late twice, so you skip meditating for two days. Someone gave you a beautiful chocolate bar, so you have some.
It’s the commitment Slip ‘n Slide. You take one step and slide all the way off.
I used to think I was good at commitment. Ask me to do something, and I follow through. I complete the task on time. You don’t have to remind me about a meeting — I always show up, usually on time. But then I took a closer look, and some damning evidence started to pile up. I realized I had slip-slid my way through a few nutritional challenges, allowing myself “cheat days.” I committed to meditation in the new year, then it always faded away by April. I said I was committed to my family, especially my stepkids, after moving in with them, until Chris pointed out booking myself with trainings and other work on weekends was not showing up for family time.
That last one was hard to hear, and he was right.
The lessons around commitment — specifically the excuses I used to get out of commitment — accumulated over the years. Until the day came when I wanted to sleep instead of meditate, and still did it. Until that time, I did a nutritional challenge, and every time I saw a donut or a cookie, I just didn’t eat it, and I kept going. Until I stopped booking out my weekends and committed myself to being with my family, no matter what.
You know what changed? I stopped making it hard. I stopped giving myself exceptions. I stopped coming up with excuses. I also realized the commitments were, deep down, promises I made to myself. I was breaking those promises, left and right. It’s the worst kind of betrayal, to not keep your own word.
I don’t make it hard any more. I still slip up on occasion, and it’s not nearly as much as it used to be. I just do it. If I mess up, I own up, I recommit, and I do it again, without making it a big deal.
Where have you been using excuses to slide out of commitment? Is it time for you to commit to yourself? Share below!