So I have been doing this blog now for 167 days, which really already seems like a lot. At the same time, there are still more days in the 365 than there are days behind me… but not for long. Two weeks from now I will reach the halfway point.
Have you heard of an app called SticKK? It helps you commit to things, such as exercise, or health-related, reading books, etc, and then you can set it up so that it donates some of your money to your least favorite charity (seriously) if you don’t follow through.
I used this app a couple of years ago, one time with great success, and another time not with great success (I ended up donating to charity that time, boo hoo). What I like about it is that it can help automate your consistency with doing actions.
Another tool that I have used, or encourage my piano students to use, it to set reminders in your phone. There are so many ways to get automatic accountability when you want to get something done.
Yet perhaps the most powerful way is to declare what you want before those whom you care about. I made my announcement to the “whole world” (Okay, so it was just my Facebook wall) about this blogging project, and I admit it, that commitment has HELPED ME STICK TO THIS! If I hadn’t made that commitment, it is quite possible that I could have found a way to wheedle out of doing this, lol.
I’m very careful about what I commit to because I really, really care about my integrity. I especially care that people know that when I say I will do something, then I do it. Now, there have been times where I have failed at this, and believe me, it crushes me every time. Generally speaking, I intended that my word is my bond.
A case in point: I worked on the Artist Mindset Podcast for four months last year. Each week I posted a new episode. But I was very careful not to commit to it as more than an experiment, because I did not know for sure how long I wanted to do it, and because of this blog: I figured I already had enough of a commitment with this everyday. Yet I did the podcast for awhile, had a lot of fun, and gave myself food for thought for more projects like that down the road. Yet there is no suffering from me having “failed” to complete what I set out to do. Because that was what I set out to do: Experiment! Until I didn’t want to.
Personally, I have found the issue of commitment very tricky. There have been times when I committed to something, and ended up suffering through that commitment until it was over. Does it have integrity to stick something out if it is making you miserable? Could there perhaps be a higher integrity in re-negotiating to get out of that commitment? I think so. Yet I admit, I have generally tended to stick things out. Hence I am very careful about my commitments.
This blog project has been easy to stick out because it fits me so well. I admit it, projects involving other people can be… trickier. It’s probably my head. Yet this blog project depends solely on me, and it doesn’t rely on reader-reactions or something to be a success. It’s directly in my wheelhouse: writing on topics that interest me, and working on my own.
Maybe then part of commitment is the importance of committing to things that truly make sense. In many cases, I don’t think people should suffer through things just because they committed. In a perfect world, people only commit it when it resonates with their heart, gives them true satisfaction and alignment. In my experience, commitment can sometimes end up feeling like imprisonment… when that commitment doesn’t match with who I am.
So be judicious in your commitments! I heard it said that there is freedom in commitment, and I believe it is true… when those commitments fit who you are.