Some days I wake up feeling discouraged, frustrated and tired of it all. I call it a COVID day when I grieve the way things used to be and berate myself for not completing my book, getting organized or reaching out to more family with all the extra time I think I should have. I may even self-medicate with sugar and busyness, even though I know it won’t help. And then I remember a self-leadership skill that will, keeping my word.
Keeping your word is keeping your promise. This may sound obvious, but when we start paying attention, we may realize we talk about doing things more than we actually do them. For me, this includes getting up early to write, not tackle email, decluttering my crawl space, or calling my homebound aunt because I said I would.
Keeping your word helps you do the right thing to stay the course, even when you don’t want to. It nurtures trust and confidence in the relationship you have with yourself and everyone else because it helps you feel good about yourself.
Here are 5 ways to help you keep your word:
1. Get Grounded
2. Slow down or stop altogether and ask, What is really most important right now? Busyness breeds more busyness and stillness cultivates clarity.
3. Be Impeccable with Your Word
4. This is the first agreement in Dan Miguel’s The Four Agreements because our words have a lot of power. Before you say you will do something, (out loud or to yourself), be certain it is both realistic and important to you.
5. Speak Your Truth
6. Be honest and determine what is really a priority, even if it’s uncomfortable, unpopular, or unexpected. We must decide what matters most, and do that
7. Create Structure
8. While I tend to reject structure and routine, I know how effective it is to help me keep my word. Time-blocking, Eating my frogs, and creating deadlines are essential for anything I really want to get done.
10. We all have COVID days and need to recommit to keeping our word in the smallest and biggest of ways. All the decisions I make today, like what I eat for dinner and what time I go to bed affect my ability to keep the promises I make for tomorrow.
When you keep your word, you are doing the right thing and staying the course for your patients, family, community, and most importantly, yourself. This self-leadership skill builds your resilience when you need it most, which is right now.