COMMITMENT—THE FUEL OF SUCCESS
In the great game of life in which we all participate, there is much to be learned from the Sergio Garcia story. Let us acknowledge very few of us escape self-doubt when failing to meet the expectations we have for our lives. Not achieving a goal we had set within a specific time frame can weaken our resolve—all sorts of messages mess with our minds seeking to challenge our worthiness or reservedness for accomplishing what we had set out to do. These thoughts try to bully us into giving up.
Bullies are cowards who run away when confronted with the courageous. A true commitment is a courageous, heartfelt promise to yourself from which you will not back down. Many people have dreams and many have good intentions, but few are willing to make the commitment necessary for their attainment. Ken Blanchard said it perfectly: “There’s a difference between interest and commitment. When you’re interested in doing something, you do it only when it’s convenient. When you’re committed to something, you accept no excuses, only results.”
Commitment is the parent of determination. Commitment as manifested in determined action is the fuel that will propel you into the future you imagine for yourself. Successful people refer to commitment as “paying your dues.” What does this mean? We leave the concert or Broadway show thrilled with the performance and the artistry. Do we ever consider, however, the commitment to endless hours of practice and rehearsal—the buckets of perspiration that made possible such a joyous experience?
The movie is over and we have laughed or cried, jumped out of our skin or cringed, been mesmerized by the special effects or the many other aspects of film making. Do we appreciate the commitment to doing as many takes as necessary to get every scene just right, followed by long hours in the editing room blending together a final product that provides such wonderful entertainment?
Life presents itself one day at a time. Commitments, therefore, need to be made in daily bite-sized chunks that can be assimilated without risk of mental indigestion. One page at a time a book is written, one brick at a time a house is built, one stone at a time a cathedral is constructed. One stroke at a time the artist paints, one day at a time the addict recovers a life. The great joys, accomplishments, and satisfactions of life are experienced by the committed. Why not become one of them?
“Don’t ask what the world needs. Ask what makes you come alive. What the world needs is more people who have come alive!” —Howard Thurman