“A firm commitment to do something today will always best an exuberant promise to act tomorrow.”

“A firm commitment to do something today will always best an exuberant promise to act tomorrow.”

Stephen St. Amant, author of Savenwood Blog

Image from Amazon

Most of us enter our days with good intentions. We have much to do and we set out to be highly productive, serve others, and leave things better than how we found them.

Benjamin Zender, who co-authored The Art of Possibility, uses an exercise with his musical prodigies when they work with him.

Since virtually everyone he works with has first chair talent, he asks them to write an essay titled How I Got My “A”.   Through this exercise, students focused on their own efforts and the actions they took, rather than their hopeful efforts and intent. The element of comparing their own efforts against themselves versus others also let them set their own bar of excellence.


What promises do you make to yourself and others that sometimes fall by the wayside?

What commitments will you keep today to deserve the “A” you desire?

Consider reading The Art of Possibility to discover more nuggets of wisdom to achieve and be your very best!

“Individual willpower is a shallow container from which to draw energy.”

“Individual willpower is a shallow container from which to draw energy.”

Omar Brownson, co-host of the Gratitude Blooming Podcast

Image from Unsplash by Dose Juice

Most of you know that I am a morning person. It’s the time of day when I have the greatest energy and discipline. On most days I meditate, exercise, and eat my oatmeal on the run before I dash into my schedule.

As the day progresses, I use snacks and a few doses of caffeine to keep up the pace. Lunchtime is often a quick affair, with only modestly healthy choices if I neglect to have something prepared.

By three in the afternoon, I’m pretty pooped and most of my disciplined efforts are nowhere to be found. Happily, an occasional power nap sets things right and I’m good until 10:00 p.m., when I head to bed to fully recharge for the next day.


When do you have the greatest energy and discipline in your days? How can and do you apply this awareness to accomplish your highest priorities and commitments?

Friday Review: Commitment

Friday Review: Commitment

How committed are you to your commitments? Here are a few related posts you may have missed.


“Stay committed to your decisions but stay flexible in your approach.”




“Apologizing doesn’t always mean you’re wrong, and the other person is right. It means you value your relationship more than your ego.”



“When we do what we have to do we are compliant. When we do what we choose to do we are committed.”




“Be your own compass.”

“Be your own compass.”

—Author Unknown

Image from Unsplash by AbsolutVision

To what degree have you felt lost over the past several months?

Where did you once have clarity in your life, and to what extent do things now seem to be foggy?

Now is the time to be your own compass, to verify your “True North” and set forth with more confidence and commitment.

What are the values, beliefs, and priorities that generate the magnetic field within you, keeping you on course regardless of small or mountainous issues along the way?


How do you know when you are on the right path?

What personal or professional adjustments will you make today to better follow your own inner compass?

“Hope is like the sun, which, as we journey toward it, casts the shadow of our burden behind us.”

“Hope is like the sun, which, as we journey toward it, casts the shadow of our burden behind us.”

—Samuel Smiles, 19th Century Scottish government reformer

Image from Unsplash by Martino Pietropoli

Given our turbulent times, it is clearer than ever that hope is not a good strategy to right our world.

Wishful thinking and turning a blind eye to the objective truth has delayed the full mobilization of our world to come together as one.

Hope is, however, very powerful in that it can and will inspire our individual and collective efforts to cast the shadows of our challenges behind us.


How and in what ways can and will you mobilize your most hopeful energies and committed actions as we journey together to better our world?

When we do what we have to do we are compliant

“When we do what we have to do we are compliant. When we do what we choose to do we are committed.”

—Marshall Goldsmith, American Leadership Coach

Image from a3carpetcleaning.com

To what degree are you an “extra credit” type of person? Recall your early educational experiences, in which a special teacher or a special subject motivated you well beyond just meeting expectations and passing the course. They motivated you to experience new levels of excellence, achievement, and of course, greater personal growth.

What about today in your vocational and avocational efforts? Where do you choose to go the extra mile and exceed expectations versus simply doing just enough to maintain your employment (for the moment) and get by?


To help you make the shift from compliant to committed, consider exploring the work of Dan Pink in his book, Drive, to see how greater autonomy, mastery, and purpose will help you choose and eventually realize a far more fulfilling and rewarding life.

It doesn’t make any sense

“It doesn’t make any sense to make a key and then run around looking for a lock to open.”

—Seth Godin, American Author

Image of a hand holding a single key

Image from Unsplash by CMDR Shane

The Giving Pledge is a commitment by the world’s wealthiest individuals and families to dedicate the majority of their wealth to giving back. You can learn more about this remarkable commitment to philanthropy and the causes they support by visiting givingpledge.org.

If you happen to not currently be on the list of the ultra-wealthy, I suggest you consider the Impact Pledge. There, we can all participate in a highly specific project by publicly committing our resources – especially time and energy – to a worthy mission to better our world. In such a way we can all participate in the design of a “key” solution that opens the doors of our most daunting local and world issues.


Consider visiting the Impact Pledge site to see how you might become a critical key to bettering our world.

Go as Long as you Can

“Go as long as you can, and then take another step.”

—Author Unknown

Image from Pinterest

How often do you hear yourself or others say, “I did my best”?

What percentage of the time is that statement true?

If you are like me and many others, we almost always leave a little in the tank, knowing that if we truly gave our all and failed, something terrible would happen.

Failing, knowing you could have studied more, worked harder, and gone farther somehow makes our less than optimal results seem OK. We say things like:

  • At least I passed
  • I was in the upper quartile of my class
  • I made partner quicker than most in my firm


Experiment today in taking one more step, doing one more rep of your exercise, making one more call, or working one extra hour. Reach out to one more friend or help one more person.

Notice the energy you experience, and don’t be surprised if there is still more in the tank, ready to go!

Friday Review: Commitment


What commitments will you make and hold to in 2017? Here are a few commitment-related posts you may have missed. Click the links to read the full message:


“The quality of a person’s life is in direct proportion to their commitment to excellence, regardless of their chosen field of endeavor.”




“Today is when everything that’s going to happen from now on begins.”





“Don’t compromise yourself. You’re all you’ve got.”





willingness to endure struggle

“The only difference between a casual interest and a deep desire is the latter inspires a willingness to endure struggle.”

—Brendon Burchard, American Motivational Author

Image of the word "endurance"

Image from Flickr by Faith(@101)

One of my favorite phrases is Commitment Supersedes Comfort. Examine for yourself where and when you and others you know operate outside your comfort zone, rather than taking the path of least resistance.

Hard work, overcoming obstacles, and taking on big challenges are far more satisfying when we are focused on a goal or the outcome we deeply desire.


Select at least one of your deeply held personal or professional desires for which you will accept whatever struggle may be required. What are you willing to endure to achieve it?