The Hard Thing To Do: Committing To Your Goals

One of my previous posts was based completely on quotes, and what makes them so great. Today I’m sharing a quote that is really relevant in my life and is probably quite relatable to you as well.

Commitment is doing the thing you said you would do, long after the mood you said it in has left you.

I was first introduced to this quote last year in my AP European History class. My teacher was one of those teachers who had a bunch of posters hanging around the room, especially ones with stereotypical quotes on them. This quote happened to be on one of the posters she had in her room (it didn’t say who this quote came from, and I was having a hard time finding out who it was on the internet). The thing about quotes, is that some just click with you, and this was one of them for me.

So many times in our lives, we find ourselves taking on projects and goals that we don’t end up following through with. This is because we aren’t truly committing to them. It’s easy to say, “I’m going to do this because I have the power to do it.” Anyone can say that. We all have the power to say things. Next time you say or think this, ask yourself, “Do I have the power to commit to it?”

The mood we find ourselves in when setting a goal or starting a project, is one of anticipation for success. When you actually start what you have planned however, things get sticky. It’s hard to do. Problems arise. You lose motivation. All of these things occur, but if you are really committed to doing what you had set out to do in the first place, you can overcome these obstacles.

One of the most obvious examples of this, is with school. You tell yourself, “I am going to pass this test.” To pass this test, you need to commit to studying. You’ll proceed to procrastinate on studying because you don’t feel like it. Studying of course, is quite boring. Who cares about studying when you could be off hanging with friends or watching TV? Then you convince yourself that you don’t need to study right now by thinking, “I’ll study later, I have plenty of time.” Suddenly, it is time for that test you were going to get an A on. You have done zero studying and you don’t get an A as a result of that. The issue? You didn’t commit to that goal you set when you were first feeling ambitious.

I can’t tell you how many times I have gone through this. Every Friday I tell myself, “This weekend I am catching up on homework.” Sunday evening I find myself scrambling to write three blog posts by midnight, read ten pages for AP Environmental Science, catch up on reading for AP US History, and then maybe squeeze in a bit of practicing on the flute.

Why can’t we commit to our goals? I don’t know if I have the answer (Derek Sivers may be on to something), but the next time you say you are going to do something, constantly recall the feeling you had when you said it. Remember the excitement you felt when thinking about what you were going to accomplish. Have the power to DO what you said you were going to do!




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