the core of our essence
Commitment lies at the very core of our essence. Visualize the great 16th century Italian/Spanish explorer, Amerigo Vespucci, captaining his ship through a rough storm. He has his compass, his knowledge and experience of the sea, yet in his memoirs he revealed that it was his commitment to his crew, his family, the King of Spain and his faith, which gave him the determination and courage to lead and persevere.
As an explorer and navigator in the modern business world, your commitments and your ability to maneuver through the obstacles to fulfillment are similar, yet much more complex. We are going to briefly examine your commitments to your company, family and yourself, and how conscious daily actions will bring integrity and wholeness to your life.
The most critical commitment that one can make, is to oneself: physically, men- tally, emotionally and spiritually. If you do not take care of yourself on these lev- els, you will not be able to fulfill your commitments to your family and loved ones, or your business.
When you made the commitment to lead your company, you took on a task with innumerable challenges and responsibilities. Your personal source of income and security is contingent upon your performance. Moreover, you are highly visible and accountable for your decisions and actions. Fulfilling all commitments made to your people, the stakeholders, your company and its values, all while being consistent with your true self, your values and your integrity, can be exceedingly demanding.
Amid the tasks of running a company, how often do we see fellow entrepreneurs and executives going through difficult times with their marriages and families? We all know the price that is paid when our commitments to our work overshad- ow our familial responsibilities, or when our perspectives of previously established values become clouded. We also know the abundance, both inner and outer, that comes from maintaining a healthy balance. This balance is strongly rooted in commitment and discipline.
The barriers to sustaining your commitments may be physical and/or mental in nature. Feeling overwhelmed with your daily and weekly tasks will often lead to a decrease in both physical and mental energy. As a result, you may become more impatient with yourself and others, be more prone to react to events and conse- quently, reduce your choices and opportunities.
The tools useful for minimizing and overcoming our barriers lie within us. As we take care of ourselves by being disciplined in our sleeping habits, eating “right”, exercising on a regular basis, being aware of our mental and emotional states and maintaining our spiritual well-being, we develop mindfulness, which enables us to be present and aware in the moment. Through this committed practice, patience, clarity and true abundance will flourish.
“Commitment, what a powerful and impactful word. A word which if enacted can provide a self-fulfilling outcome as Goethe speculated. Throughout my career I have viewed myself as being a very committed person. However, was I committed to the correct things? Was I being disciplined in the way I needed to be to live an authentic life?
I moved through my life, as many, unaware of myself and unaware of the world. My career drove my life, it was my true commitment and all my discipline went into its success. I had gone through life committed to my career, placing this commitment above those to myself and family. As uncertainty began to shake my career, I began to question my commitments. This was the catalyst for me to begin the examination of myself. Through this journey I have rediscovered many aspects of my true self and through the review of my commitments I learned much about myself.
I learned, I allowed my commitment to my career to repress my commitment to my family and to myself. Though I was committed, my commitments were not properly balanced nor aligned with my true self. In understanding and accepting this reality I have begun to rebalance my commitments. I am still committed to my career, but it no longer supersedes my commitment to myself and my family.
Through this renewed commitment focused on authenticity, I have begun to experience life in a way that is in line with my true self. Through this journey I am hopeful to begin to build stronger family relationships which suffered due to my misalignment of my commitments prior to this journey. As Goethe stated one must just begin, and so I have begun, the alignment of my commitments with my authentic self, many wonderful and surprising things lie ahead in my quest.”
D. Hagerman Regional VP
Questions for Self-Exploration
The content, structure and flow of this exercise are designed to guide you in:
exploring your life commitments and how they relate to those in your business life
evaluating your commitments and how you honor them
examining how your commitments and disciplines affect yourself and others
applying your increased awareness towards living with a deep sense of integrity, wholeness and authenticity