Stop Making Empty Promises

Promise Vase.jpg

It’s easy to make promises and not treat them as commitments. “I’ll have that done by Thursday,” “I’ll be there at 5,” “We’ll get together next week.” We all say these things - or things just like them - every day. We assume that saying them isn’t really a commitment, it’s just what we’re going to “try” to do - and that whomever we’re saying it to, knows that as well.

Things get interesting when we realize that each time we make a promise - even one we had no intention of committing to, for real - we create tension. Now it’s hanging out there. We said we would do it, and until we do, there’s a question mark: will it happen, or won’t it?

This tension draws our energy away from making things happen. The moment we start following through on our promises, we start to get that energy back. The moment we start to make our promises more carefully, really only promising what we are committed to doing, we get even more energy back. And when we take our promises to ourselves as seriously as we do our promises to other people, that energy goes to a whole new level.

What would happen if, for one day, you only said you’d do things that you fully intended to do? Try it. Notice your energy levels, and how it feels to resolve the tension each time you follow through on a promise, whether with yourself or someone else.

Let us know how it goes. We’ll be right there with you.

Hannah Knapp