And your response to my question?  I’m guessing you’d ask me more questions.  Commitment to what? Doesn’t it depend on the project? And who’s involved? YES.  Absolutely!

I’ve been a party to many conversations over the years, hearing other people described as very reliable versus very flaky when it comes to commitment.  We all struggle with trying to keep a balance between supporting our friends and family in their projects/ideas, and looking after/being true to ourselves. So just how do you keep a balance, and how do you manage other peoples’ expectations and disappointment in your behaviour?

I believe it’s all down to firm, clear and prompt communication.  If you’ve decided that the venture isn’t for you, or you aren’t able to commit to the event for whatever reason, then say so, and do it as quickly and firmly as possible AND STICK TO YOUR GUNS.  And remember, you don’t have to justify your decision or explain yourself. Of course, the hardest people to do this with are family and close friends, who seem to demand an explanation/attendance/loyalty whatever the circumstances. But remember, practice makes perfect, so start off saying no in situations that don’t matter too much, so that when the biggy comes along, you’re prepared to say no. Commitment isn’t just to other people, it’s to you and your needs as well.

There is real freedom in saying ‘no’ in a polite, respectful manner and sticking to it. By the way, we’re discussing social stuff here – the workplace is a whole new ball-game where some bosses think that they can bully their way into securing staff commitment by using the money/stick method.  Not so.

Back to the original question. Q: When it comes to commitment, are you a chicken or a pig? A: When it comes to a cooked breakfast, the chicken is interested and the pig is committed! Haha!

Going forward, why not be clear about what you commit to? Behave as if life is a cooked breakfast and you’re known, not as an interested chicken, but as a committed pig. Aim to have Solid and Dependable written on your tombstone – or Oink oink for short!