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Why Commitments Matter

Updated: Jan 4

“We will rise and fall in accordance with the commitments we keep”

Turn on any news broadcast, read the news online or in print, and you’ll find all kinds of trouble that leaders have been getting themselves into. Financial impropriety, sexual misconduct, insider trading, the list is endless. Whether it’s looking for a short cut to climbing the ladder of success, or an abuse of power from those who have ruined their apparent “good reputation;” the fault will always be found in a misguided commitment.

Who we are when no one is looking, is who we really are, and what lies within us will eventually come to the surface for all to see - good or bad. The moral of the story is an old one; “The end doesn’t justify the means.” It’s sad to see so many public figures once respected be forced to step down in disgrace.

I’ve known a number of people in the past 30 years who were on the brink of making it big when they crashed and burned, losing everything. Losing their career, their family, and their reputation certainly wasn’t on their calendar or their “to do list.”

Seeing this play out a number of times made me think, how successful do I want to be and at what cost? I needed to redefine my definition of what it means to be successful, because I knew that I didn’t want to sacrifice my family on the altar of achievement.

“The cost of High Achievement should always be worth the price you pay”

For one thing, being at your best must include your family. Far too many leaders striving to be at the top of their field neglect their families. Are you as successful at home as you are at the office? It will do us no good to trade our families and our reputation for a position or an income.

Ask Yourself What You Value Most

What do you value most? Devote the best of yourself to it. How much quality time have you devoted to your family and the people who matter most to you? They are your support system, they encourage you when you’re down and celebrate your victories with you when you’re on top of the world.

Check your priorities; I know a number of “successful” career people who mapped out the path of success for their organizations, while not knowing where they or their families were really headed!

“Unless commitment is made, there are only promises and hopes... but no plans.”
- Peter Drucker

Make a High Quality Commitment to Intentionally Living a Fulfilling Life with Purpose

We have made a commitment when we intentionally choose to take on a responsibility, restricting our freedom to act as we please, in order to accomplish a greater good.

Cathy Caprino said; “If you want a happy life beyond the professional work you do, you have to fiercely commit to it, and that’s where so many women and men fall down. It’s critical to make career decisions that honor both types of priorities – work and family (or work and your other passions).”

She has also suggested 10 valuable commitments, I think we should consider.

“The top 10 commitments of people who are balancing life and work well, and integrating all that matters to them in a way that brings fulfillment and satisfaction are:

  1. I’m committed to building a powerful, protective boundary around myself, my life and my priorities.

  2. I’m committed to making change in my life and career when it isn’t working, and not remaining in denial about it.

  3. I’m committed to be fully present, alive and engaged in all that I do (if I can’t, I’ll modify my life).

  4. I’m committed to restoring and nurturing my health and well-being, because I matter.

  5. I’m committed to letting go of (and moving away) from the people and things that drag me down and keep me sick, stuck and small.

  6. I’m committed to seeing life as a continuum, with priorities that will change over time.

  7. I’m committed to building a powerful support community who are happy to help me when I need it, and who wholeheartedly support my goals and priorities.

  8. I’m committed to loving myself, and accepting when I’m not perfect (and that I am not perfect)

  9. I’m committed to identifying and pursuing what I have to do NOW in my life to be happy and regret- free.

  10. I’m committed to leaving an impactful legacy behind, and planting the seeds for that legacy all along the way.” (1)

“There's a higher form of happiness in commitment. I'm counting on it.”
- Claire Forlani

(1) From “10 Commitments Of People Achieving Successful Work-Life Integration” by Cathy Caprino

*** This article was authored by John Picarello, Chief Leadership Officer at Lions Pride Leadership Co.***

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