I was thinking about commitments the other day. I catch myself saying “I have to…” or “I need to….” a lot. To be honest, I don’t have to or need to do anything. Everything I do is a choice I make – based on my priorities and commitments. So when I say that I have to go do something because I committed to it – and then later on I complain about it, then I am being fake. I’m being real about how I feel about it – but why am I “committing” to things that make me unhappy or take away from areas of my life that are actually important to me? It’s because I’m not really committed to it. If I was – I would have a different attitude towards it.
This got me to thinking about how often we say we are committed to things, and then acting differently. We’re such fakers!
Life would be a lot more fulfilling and refreshing if we were real. Real with others, and real with ourselves and always trying to projecting your our true selves outwards. What does that even mean? It means our actions are completely aligned with what we say, and what we say we want for ourselves. We talk a lot about things we want in our lives, and things that we are “committed” to. If you were truly committed to things you say you wanted – then you would absolutely make them happen.
Here are some examples:
- When someone says they are committed to losing weight – are they acting that way? Many people talk about it all the time – for years even! And then they do half the work-and eat ice cream and drink beer every night. I hear this a lot: “I know what I have to do, I just haven’t been doing it”. Well good – knowing is only a tiny piece of the equation. Unless you are willing to do the work, you will continue to get the same results for the rest of your life.
- Another great example is when we are in a relationship or dating, and we aren’t honest with other people. So much time is wasted pretending to be “cool” for fear of being rejected, or acting a certain way so as not to offend the other person or have them not like us. Then we complain that we never meet anyone, or that we are unhappy in our relationships. If you are committed to improving your relationship or meeting someone great – then be honest and open about yourself.
- If I am committed to becoming a stronger and more skilled athlete, then my workouts need to reflect this – I never sacrifice a workout for anything except my own body telling me it needs rest. Period. For me this is a huge value of mine, and my goals are so clear in my mind that there isn’t even a question about it. I will literally rearrange my entire day and week to make my training happen.
Have you noticed where you do this in your life? What are you completely unwilling to change in your life because it is so important to you? A good girlfriend of mine (and owner of her own business) makes her family a priority – she sets her schedule and does not change it, so that she can spend the evening and weekend with her kids uninterrupted. And this is a commitment, because trust me, she is BUSY. This is a clear focus in her life, and although it can be challenging, she is committed to being there with her family so it is not even a question in her mind.
So what can you do? Take these steps to get started with being real:
1. First get really clear on what you value. Make a list of all the things in your life that you really, truly care about. Don’t worry about what you think you “should” care about. What do you ACTUALLY care about in your own life? Now take that list, and compare it to your actions.
2. Second, start to notice how you are acting in your life. Is this how you want to continue to act? Because here’s a secret – you will continue to get the SAME results by doing the same things. How many things on that list are consistent with how you act day to day? If you put family or your health on the list – but you work like crazy, don’t eat properly or exercise, then are you being there for your family in the long run? If you put your career on the list – are you doing what it takes to excel in your business or job, or are you surfing the net every day?
3. Make a plan. Create a plan for yourself to start acting consistent with what you really value and want for your life. Do you want to work out but have no idea what to do? Attend classes or hire a trainer. Do you want to eat healthy but aren’t sure how? Take healthy cooking classes, hire a nutrition coach, get a good cookbook, etc. The key is to do something, and stop kidding yourself about how hard you’ve “been trying”.
4. Take action from that plan. Now you have to get to work! Sadly, plans aren’t enough. They are like intentions – we always have great intentions and plans, but if we then do nothing then they mean nothing. So get to work if you want a better, happier, healthier life.
5. Don’t give up! It will be hard. You’ll be gung-ho at first, and then life will throw curveballs at you. Friends will ask you for ice cream, you’ll be too tired to workout after a hard day, etc. Remember that this is a part of doing the work. Keep looking at that list of what is important to you – then stop at nothing to be real about making it happen.
You can do it 😉