Tuesday, March 2, 2021

3 Ways to Sustain Commitment

Commit to the journey—jump in!

Remember the analogy about the frogs in this blog a couple of weeks ago? Here’s a recap:

In Kouzes and Posner’s book, Learning Leadership, they give a really good illustration of this. There are twelve frogs on a log, and seven decided to jump into the pond. How many frogs remain on the log? The answer is still twelve. See, there’s a difference between DECIDING TOJUMP and actually TAKING THE LEAP.

When you ACT, you are COMMITTING. And with each action you take towards your goal or your journey, you are committing yourself over and over again. But sustaining commitment is not easy—but here are THREE things you can do to sustain commitment.

1. Own your decisions and choices! A free and informed choice is the first step in making commitments. When you make your choice to be a leader, OWN IT. When you make a choice, you are choosing your responsibility. What’s important aside from making a choice yourself, is to make sure that you’ve explored all other options.

Look around you, weigh pros and cons, and don’t be afraid to reflect.

2. Tell others about your decisions! This is taking your commitment to the next higher step—by making your choices visible to others. When you tell someone about your decisions, you are subjecting yourself to their review and thoughts. And you show evidence of your commitment.

Take it a step further and work with someone like a coach, a mentor, a colleague, or a partner to hold yourself accountable to your decisions. When you decide to become a leader, you can’t do it alone and you can’t keep it to yourself!

3. Make your choices hard to revoke. Simply making your decision available to others is not enough—you have to make these choices difficult to take back. Choices that are hard to change or revise have the tendency to be taken lightly.

So don’t just make easy decisions that you’re bound to brush off or forget. Make HARD choices, CHALLENGING choices, and be serious about them.

These three things translate to THREE questions you should ask yourself:

  • “Am I making a free choice to become an exemplary leader?”
  • “How am I going to make my decision to become an exemplary leader visible to others?”
  • “What am I going to do to make my decision to become an exemplary leader hard to back out of?”

Feel free to share your answers with me. You know where to reach me:

Dr. Rob

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