How’s Your Commitment Working For You?
Why isn’t wanting something enough to help you achieve it?
The thought, “I ought to lose weight” has never melted away the pounds.
“I’m dying to declutter and free up some space” doesn’t mean your home will magically becomes a place of pristine, Marie Kondo-esque loveliness.
Even a statement as strong as “I’m absolutely going to start marketing my business on social media” doesn’t guarantee that you’ll do diddly squat about it.
Expressing a desire is a good start – it means you have an idea of what you want.
But, as we’ve all experienced, wanting something – even if we want it with all our might and it’s within our power to have it – doesn’t mean we’ll make it happen.
It’s a paradox. We want it. We’re physically capable of doing it. No-one’s stopping us, and yet….
So why the frack aren’t we following through?
If you’ve come here hoping for a magic button, sorry it’s not that simple. Even with all my mindset training, the fastest I can confidently help you turn from procrastinator to action taker is 14 days. That process involves developing self awareness, shifting your mindset, ramping up your motivation, setting the right goals and creating a new action habit. It’s extremely effective but it takes time and effort.
But there is one fundamental – and swift – diagnosis you can make right now to help explain why you might not be taking action on something you believe you want:
Assess your level of commitment
If there’s something you want to achieve and it’s just not happening, take a look at my Commitment Curve™ below and assess as honestly as you can where you are in terms of your level of commitment.
What this diagram illustrates is that feeling a sense of obligation, or wanting to, or intending to, or even being determined to get something done are not strong enough to push you into taking action. What’s needed is your total commitment.
Your unconscious mind holds the key to commitment
The primary function of your unconscious mind is to keep you alive. One of the ways in which it does this is by attempting to maintain the status quo – in other words, not changing a thing.
Even if your current state is not necessarily helpful, it’s familiar and therefore “safe”. Swapping a familiar state for one that’s unknown (or even just imagining that change) can fire off an alarm in the deeper reaches of your mind, signalling you to pull back.
In order to get around this instinctive urge to stay mired in ‘stuckitude’, follow this simple process:
1. Work out how committed you are. If you’re not at the upper right end of the curve, then…
2. Deliberately dial up your level of commitment as far as it will go. Ask yourself: “Do I really want this enough?” If you do, then visualise yourself achieving your objective in great detail. How great will it feel? How amazing will you look? What amazing people will you be hanging out with? What wonderful things will they say?
3. Tell yourself: “I am completely committed to achieving (state your goal) by (time and/or date). It’s safe, and it’s what I’m going to do, and I’m starting right now.”
4. Now do something, however small, to prove to your unconscious mind that you mean business. It also provides cast iron evidence that changing your behaviour won’t kill you.
Following these simple steps to ramp up your level of commitment sends a very different message to your unconscious mind than plain old wanting to achieve something. It tells your mind, “This is what I want and it’s going to be good for me.”
Try it and let me know how you get on.
If you’d like help sorting out your mindset and getting rid of self-sabotage habits, I’d be delighted to hear from you. You can reach me here.