Broken Promises

When you look at failed goals, dreams, interpersonal conflict, problems at work; the number-one factor in is actually very simple.

It can be summarized as “stated or implicit promises not kept.”

A personal goal or a commitment is simply promising to yourself that you want something and will do what it takes to achieve it.

In the military, we made a whole bunch of promises – to uphold the Constitution, toSpecial Forces mission never leave a fallen comrade, to do what needed to be done.

You make promises in your life – marriage, doing a good job for your employer, taking care of your children.

These days are full of excuses; why you couldn’t do something or the blame game as to why someone or something got in your way.

Sadly, it seems the days of doing business based on “a smile and a handshake” have long since fallen by the wayside. Contracts these days tend to include a long laundry listing of fine print, weasel-words, and escape clauses.

Not the best way to run a railroad or even your life.

One of the biggest determiners of success ever invented is simply saying what you will do and then…


When you become known for absolute reliability, friends, customers, clients, opportunity, and money will flow to you in ever increasing abundance.
The word spreads because you are so rare.

Now, just like everyone else, I occasionally get myself into a situation where I can’t meet a deadline or can’t keep a promise. I am maniacal about every commitment, from simple punctuality to the more complex projects… so the operable word is “occasionally.” It makes me nuts when this happens because, as a pragmatist, I know how detrimental to my interests it is.

When it does occur, I’ve learned not to run and hide or ignore it and hope it goes unnoticed, but to confront it, apologize, and make it right. Again, this doesn’t emerge from a ethical or moral obligation, but it’s a result of pragmatism born of experience. I’m simply choosing the best strategy.

How are you going to start making promises you are going to keep to yourself and others?  Let me know in the comments.

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